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EMBO J. 1995 Jun 1;14(11):2620-30.

Biogenesis, structure and function of the yeast 20S proteasome.

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Department of Biochemistry and Molecular Biology, University of Chicago, IL 60637, USA.


Intracellular degradation of many eukaryotic proteins requires their covalent ligation to ubiquitin. We previously identified a ubiquitin-dependent degradation pathway in the yeast Saccharomyces cerevisiae, the DOA pathway. Independent work has suggested that a major mechanism of cellular proteolysis involves a large multisubunit protease(s) called the 20S proteasome. We demonstrate here that Doa3 and Doa5, two essential components of the DOA pathway, are subunits of the proteasome. Biochemical analyses of purified mutant proteasomes suggest functions for several conserved proteasome subunit residues. All detectable proteasome particles purified from doa3 or doa5 cells have altered physical properties; however, the mutant particles contain the same 14 different subunits as the wild-type enzyme, indicating that most or all yeast 20S proteasomes comprise a uniform population of hetero-oligomeric complexes rather than a mixture of particles of variable subunit composition. Unexpectedly, we found that the yeast Doa3 and Pre3 subunits are synthesized as precursors which are processed in a manner apparently identical to that of related mammalian proteasome subunits implicated in antigen presentation, suggesting that biogenesis of the proteasome particle is highly conserved between yeast and mammals.

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