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Evolutionary relationships and structural mechanisms of AAA+ proteins.

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Department of Molecular and Cell Biology, University of California, Berkeley, California 94720, USA.


Complex cellular events commonly depend on the activity of molecular "machines" that efficiently couple enzymatic and regulatory functions within a multiprotein assembly. An essential and expanding subset of these assemblies comprises proteins of the ATPases associated with diverse cellular activities (AAA+) family. The defining feature of AAA+ proteins is a structurally conserved ATP-binding module that oligomerizes into active arrays. ATP binding and hydrolysis events at the interface of neighboring subunits drive conformational changes within the AAA+ assembly that direct translocation or remodeling of target substrates. In this review, we describe the critical features of the AAA+ domain, summarize our current knowledge of how this versatile element is incorporated into larger assemblies, and discuss specific adaptations of the AAA+ fold that allow complex molecular manipulations to be carried out for a highly diverse set of macromolecular targets.

[Indexed for MEDLINE]

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