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J Biol Chem. 2009 May 15;284(20):13881-91. doi: 10.1074/jbc.M900818200. Epub 2009 Mar 11.

The RIG-I-like receptor LGP2 recognizes the termini of double-stranded RNA.

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Department of Biochemistry and Biophysics, Texas A & M University, College Station, Texas 77843-2128, USA.


The RIG-I-like receptors (RLRs), RIG-I and MDA5, recognize single-stranded RNA with 5' triphosphates and double-stranded RNA (dsRNA) to initiate innate antiviral immune responses. LGP2, a homolog of RIG-I and MDA5 that lacks signaling capability, regulates the signaling of the RLRs. To establish the structural basis of dsRNA recognition by the RLRs, we have determined the 2.0-A resolution crystal structure of human LGP2 C-terminal domain bound to an 8-bp dsRNA. Two LGP2 C-terminal domain molecules bind to the termini of dsRNA with minimal contacts between the protein molecules. Gel filtration chromatography and analytical ultracentrifugation demonstrated that LGP2 binds blunt-ended dsRNA of different lengths, forming complexes with 2:1 stoichiometry. dsRNA with protruding termini bind LGP2 and RIG-I weakly and do not stimulate the activation of RIG-I efficiently in cells. Surprisingly, full-length LGP2 containing mutations that abolish dsRNA binding retained the ability to inhibit RIG-I signaling.

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