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Biochemistry. 1989 Oct 31;28(22):8792-7.

A dynamic model for the structure of acyl carrier protein in solution.

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Department of Chemistry, Yale University, New Haven, Connecticut 06511.


The determination of solution structures of proteins using two-dimensional NMR data is commonly based on the assumption that the structure can be represented by a single rigid conformer. We present here a procedure whereby this assumption can be relaxed and illustrate its application to acyl carrier protein from Escherichia coli, a small negatively charged protein with no internal disulfide bonds. The methodology rests on a model having two distinct conformers in dynamic equilibrium. Use of this two-state model results in a dramatic improvement in fit to cross-relaxation-derived distance constraints and a substantial lowering of molecular mechanics energies for individual conformers of acyl carrier protein. The two-state model retains the three-helix motif previously identified on the basis of a one-state structure, but substantial motion of loop regions and the C-terminal peptide, as well as partial disruption of the second helix, is suggested to occur. Support for the existence of these motions can be found in amide exchange rate and spin relaxation time data.

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