The integration of most membrane proteins into the cytoplasmic membrane of bacteria occurs co-translationally. The universally conserved YidC protein mediates this process either individually as a membrane protein insertase, or in concert with the SecY complex. Here, we present a structural model of YidC based on evolutionary co-variation analysis, lipid-versus-protein-exposure and molecular dynamics simulations. The model suggests a distinctive arrangement of the conserved five transmembrane domains and a helical hairpin between transmembrane segment 2 (TM2) and TM3 on the cytoplasmic membrane surface. The model was used for docking into a cryo-electron microscopy reconstruction of a translating YidC-ribosome complex carrying the YidC substrate FOc. This structure reveals how a single copy of YidC interacts with the ribosome at the ribosomal tunnel exit and identifies a site for membrane protein insertion at the YidC protein-lipid interface. Together, these data suggest a mechanism for the co-translational mode of YidC-mediated membrane protein insertion.
- Ramanujan S Hegde, MRC Laboratory of Molecular Biology, United Kingdom
© 2014, Wickles et al.
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One-dimensional (1D) target search is a well-characterized phenomenon for many DNA-binding proteins but is poorly understood for chromatin remodelers. Herein, we characterize the 1D scanning properties of SWR1, a conserved yeast chromatin remodeler that performs histone exchange on +1 nucleosomes adjacent to a nucleosome-depleted region (NDR) at gene promoters. We demonstrate that SWR1 has a kinetic binding preference for DNA of NDR length as opposed to gene-body linker length DNA. Using single and dual color single-particle tracking on DNA stretched with optical tweezers, we directly observe SWR1 diffusion on DNA. We found that various factors impact SWR1 scanning, including ATP which promotes diffusion through nucleotide binding rather than ATP hydrolysis. A DNA-binding subunit, Swc2, plays an important role in the overall diffusive behavior of the complex, as the subunit in isolation retains similar, although faster, scanning properties as the whole remodeler. ATP-bound SWR1 slides until it encounters a protein roadblock, of which we tested dCas9 and nucleosomes. The median diffusion coefficient, 0.024 μm2/s, in the regime of helical sliding, would mediate rapid encounter of NDR-flanking nucleosomes at length scales found in cellular chromatin.
The DNA sliding clamp proliferating cell nuclear antigen (PCNA) is an essential co-factor for many eukaryotic DNA metabolic enzymes. PCNA is loaded around DNA by the ATP-dependent clamp loader replication factor C (RFC), which acts at single-stranded (ss)/double-stranded DNA (dsDNA) junctions harboring a recessed 3’ end (3’ ss/dsDNA junctions) and at DNA nicks. To illuminate the loading mechanism we have investigated the structure of RFC:PCNA bound to ATPγS and 3’ ss/dsDNA junctions or nicked DNA using cryogenic electron microscopy. Unexpectedly, we observe open and closed PCNA conformations in the RFC:PCNA:DNA complex, revealing that PCNA can adopt an open, planar conformation that allows direct insertion of dsDNA, and raising the question of whether PCNA ring closure is mechanistically coupled to ATP hydrolysis. By resolving multiple DNA-bound states of RFC:PCNA we observe that partial melting facilitates lateral insertion into the central channel formed by RFC:PCNA. We also resolve the Rfc1 N-terminal domain and demonstrate that its single BRCT domain participates in coordinating DNA prior to insertion into the central RFC channel, which promotes PCNA loading on the lagging strand of replication forks in vitro. Combined, our data suggest a comprehensive and fundamentally revised model for the RFC-catalyzed loading of PCNA onto DNA.