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EMBO J. 1995 May 15;14(10):2281-92.

Identification of a regulatory motif in Hsp70 that affects ATPase activity, substrate binding and interaction with HDJ-1.

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Department of Biochemistry, Molecular Biology and Cell Biology, Northwestern University, Evanston, IL 60208, USA.


The Hsp70 family of molecular chaperones has an essential role in the synthesis, folding and translocation of the nascent peptide chain. While the general features of these activities are well documented, less is understood about the regulation of these activities. The ATPase rate is stimulated by non-native proteins, furthermore, interaction with ATP leads to the release of protein substrate concurrent with a conformational change in Hsp70. One interpretation of these data is that the two domains of Hsp70 interact. In the process of mapping the carboxyl-terminal boundary of the substrate binding domain for human Hsp70, we identified a regulatory motif, EEVD, which is conserved at the extreme carboxyl terminus among nearly all cloned cytosolic eukaryotic Hsp70s. Deletion or mutation of EEVD affects the ATPase activity, the ability to interact with substrates, and interferes with the ability of the mutant Hsp70 to interact with HDJ-1 in the refolding of denatured firefly luciferase. Examination of the biophysical properties of the mutant Hsp70s reveals a change in the overall shape and conformation of the protein consistent with reduced interactions between the two domains. These data suggest that the EEVD motif is involved in the intramolecular regulation of Hsp70 function and intermolecular interactions with HDJ-1.

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