Stabilization of vimentin coil2 fragment via an engineered disulfide.Chernyatina, A.A., Strelkov, S.V.
(2012) J Struct Biol 177: 46-53
- PubMed: 22119849
- DOI: 10.1016/j.jsb.2011.11.014
- Primary Citation of Related Structures:
- PubMed Abstract:
Cytoskeletal intermediate filaments (IFs) assemble from the elementary dimers based on a segmented α-helical coiled-coil (CC) structure. Crystallographic studies of IF protein fragments remain the main route to access their atomic structure. To enabl ...
Cytoskeletal intermediate filaments (IFs) assemble from the elementary dimers based on a segmented α-helical coiled-coil (CC) structure. Crystallographic studies of IF protein fragments remain the main route to access their atomic structure. To enable crystallization, such fragments must be sufficiently short. As a consequence, they often fail to assemble into the correct CC dimers. In particular, human vimentin fragment D3 corresponding to the first half of coil2 (residues 261-335) stays monomeric in solution. We have induced its dimerization via introducing a disulfide link between two cysteines engineered in the hydrophobic core of the CC close to its N-terminus. The 2.3 Å crystal structure of the D3st (stabilized) fragment reveals a mostly parallel α-helical bundle structure in its N-terminal half which smoothly continues into a left-handed CC towards the C-terminus. This provides a direct evidence for a continuously α-helical structure of the coil2 segment and disproves the previously suggested existence of linker L2 separating it into two left-handed CCs. The general principles of CC dimer stabilization by disulfide introduction are also discussed.
Laboratory for Biocrystallography, Department of Pharmaceutical and Pharmacological Sciences, Katholieke Universiteit Leuven, Belgium.