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RNA. 2004 Jan;10(1):102-13.

EF-G-independent reactivity of a pre-translocation-state ribosome complex with the aminoacyl tRNA substrate puromycin supports an intermediate (hybrid) state of tRNA binding.

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Howard Hughes Medical Institute, Department of Molecular Biology and Genetics, Johns Hopkins University School of Medicine, Baltimore, Maryland 21205, USA.


Following peptide-bond formation, the mRNA:tRNA complex must be translocated within the ribosomal cavity before the next aminoacyl tRNA can be accommodated in the A site. Previous studies suggested that following peptide-bond formation and prior to EF-G recognition, the tRNAs occupy an intermediate (hybrid) state of binding where the acceptor ends of the tRNAs are shifted to their next sites of occupancy (the E and P sites) on the large ribosomal subunit, but where their anticodon ends (and associated mRNA) remain fixed in their prepeptidyl transferase binding states (the P and A sites) on the small subunit. Here we show that pre-translocation-state ribosomes carrying a dipeptidyl-tRNA substrate efficiently react with the minimal A-site substrate puromycin and that following this reaction, the pre-translocation-state bound deacylated tRNA:mRNA complex remains untranslocated. These data establish that pre-translocation-state ribosomes must sample or reside in an intermediate state of tRNA binding independent of the action of EF-G.

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