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RNA. 2008 Jun;14(6):993-1002. doi: 10.1261/rna.908408. Epub 2008 Apr 22.

Riboswitch effectors as protein enzyme cofactors.

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1
Department of Molecular Biophysics and Biochemistry, Yale University, New Haven, Connecticut 06520, USA.

Abstract

The recently identified glmS ribozyme revealed that RNA enzymes, like protein enzymes, are capable of using small molecules as catalytic cofactors to promote chemical reactions. Flavin mononucleotide (FMN), S-adenosyl methionine (SAM), adenosyl cobalamin (AdoCbl), and thiamine pyrophosphate (TPP) are known ligands for RNA riboswitches in the control of gene expression, but are also catalytically powerful and ubiquitous cofactors in protein enzymes. If RNA, instead of just binding these molecules, could harness the chemical potential of the cofactor, it would significantly expand the enzymatic repertoire of ribozymes. Here we review the chemistry of AdoCbl, SAM, FMN, and TPP in protein enzymology and speculate on how these cofactors might have been used by ribozymes in the prebiotic RNA World or may still find application in modern biology.

PMID:
18430893
PMCID:
PMC2390802
DOI:
10.1261/rna.908408
[Indexed for MEDLINE]
Free PMC Article
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