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Structure. 2006 Dec;14(12):1801-9.

Demonstration of long-range interactions in a PDZ domain by NMR, kinetics, and protein engineering.

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Istituto di Biologia e Patologia Molecolari del CNR, Dipartimento di Scienze Biochimiche A. Rossi Fanelli, Università di Roma La Sapienza, Piazzale A. Moro 5, 00185 Rome, Italy.


Understanding the basis of communication within protein domains is a major challenge in structural biology. We present structural and dynamical evidence for allosteric effects in a PDZ domain, PDZ2 from the tyrosine phosphatase PTP-BL, upon binding to a target peptide. The NMR structures of its free and peptide-bound states differ in the orientation of helix alpha2 with respect to the remainder of the molecule, concomitant with a readjustment of the hydrophobic core. Using an ultrafast mixing instrument, we detected a deviation from simple bimolecular kinetics for the association with peptide that is consistent with a rate-limiting conformational change in the protein (k(obs) approximately 7 x 10(3) s(-1)) and an induced-fit model. Furthermore, the binding kinetics of 15 mutants revealed that binding is regulated by long-range interactions, which can be correlated with the structural rearrangements resulting from peptide binding. The homologous protein PSD-95 PDZ3 did not display a similar ligand-induced conformational change.

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