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Biochem Cell Biol. 1995 Nov-Dec;73(11-12):757-65.

A model of the translational apparatus based on a three-dimensional reconstruction of the Escherichia coli ribosome.

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Wadsworth Center, New York State, Department of Health, NY 12201-0509, USA.


The morphology of the Escherichia coli ribosome, i.e., its shape at moderate to low (20-40 A (1 A = 0.1 nm)) resolution, provides important constraints in modeling both the folding of ribosomal RNA and the translational process. A new reconstruction, obtained by low-dose cryoelectron microscopy and image processing of single ribosomes, contains clues to the way in which the ribosome interacts with the key functional ligands: the mRNA and the A- and P-site tRNAs. It also suggests possible pathways of the nascent polypeptide chain. From an interpretation of these clues in the light of existing knowledge, a plausible model for the locations and interactions of key components of protein synthesis is suggested.

[Indexed for MEDLINE]

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