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J Biol Chem. 1981 Aug 10;256(15):8102-9.

The amino acid sequence of elongation factor Tu of Escherichia coli. The complete sequence.


The complete amino acid sequence of elongation factor Tu of Escherichia coli has been established by sequencing overlapping cyanogen bromide and tryptic peptides. Sequence analysis of peptides was done primarily by solid-phase Edman degradation. Elongation factor Tu is a single chain polypeptide composed of 393 amino acids (Mr = 43,225). Its NH2 terminus is blocked with an acetyl group, as determined by mass spectroscopy, and lysine 56 is partially methylated. The cysteine residues associated with aminoacyl tRNA and guanosine nucleotide binding are located at positions 81 and 137, respectively. Although elongation factor Tu is coded for by two genes, the only site of microheterogeneity found was at the carboxyl terminus (residue 393), which is either glycine or serine. Comparison of the first 140 amino acids of elongation factor Tu and of elongation factor G shows a strong (31%) sequence homology. In addition, secondary structure calculations predict remarkable conformational similarities between the two proteins. The NH2-terminal region of elongation factor Tu appears to be composed of two beta-sheet domains connected by an exposed, alpha-helical bridge, which includes a 14-amino acid segment released by limited treatment with trypsin. Structural features of the aminoacyl-tRNA binding site are discussed in the light of sequence and other chemical and biochemical data.

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