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Acta Naturae. 2017 Oct-Dec;9(4):24-30.

The Contribution of Ribosomal Protein S1 to the Structure and Function of Qβ Replicase.

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Institute of Protein Research, Institutskaya Str. 4, Pushchino, Moscow, 142290, Russia.


The high resolution crystal structure of bacterial ribosome was determined more than 10 years ago; however, it contains no information on the structure of the largest ribosomal protein, S1. This unusual protein comprises six flexibly linked domains; therefore, it lacks a fixed structure and this prevents the formation of crystals. Besides being a component of the ribosome, protein S1 also serves as one of the four subunits of Qβ replicase, the RNA-directed RNA polymerase of bacteriophage Qβ. In each case, the role of this RNA-binding protein has been thought to consist in holding the template close to the active site of the enzyme. In recent years, a breakthrough was made in studies of protein S1 within Qβ replicase. This includes the discovery of its paradoxical ability to displace RNA from the replicase complex and determining the crystal structure of its fragment capable of performing this function. The new findings call for a re-examination of the contribution of protein S1 to the structure and function of the ribosome.


Bacteriophage Qβ; OB domain; RNA replication; RNA-directed RNA polymerase; crystal structure; initiation; ribosomal protein S1; termination


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