Functional roles of the pre-sensor I insertion sequence in an AAA+ bacterial enhancer binding protein

Patricia C. Burrows, Jörg Schumacher, Samuel Amartey, Tamaswati Ghosh, Timothy A. Burgis, Xiaodong Zhang, B. Tracy Nixon, Martin Buck

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review

13 Scopus citations


Molecular machines belonging to the AAA+ superfamily of ATPases use NTP hydrolysis to remodel their versatile substrates. The presence of an insertion sequence defines the major phylogenetic presensor I insertion (pre-Sli) AAA+ superclade. In the bacterial σ54-dependent enhancer binding protein phage shock protein F (PspF) the pre-Sli loop adopts different conformations depending on the nucleotidebound state. Single amino acid substitutions within the dynamic pre-Sli loop of PspF drastically change the ATP hydrolysis parameters, indicating a structural link to the distant hydrolysis site. We used a sitespecific protein-DNA proximity assay to measure the contribution of the pre-Sli loop in σ54-dependent transcription and demonstrate that the pre-Sli loop is a major structural feature mediating nucleotide statedependent differential engagement with Eσ54. We suggest that much, if not all, of the action of the pre-Sli loop is mediated through the L1 loop and relies on a conserved molecular switch, identified in a crystal structure of one pre-Sli variant and in accordance with the high covariance between some pre-Sli residues and distinct residues outside the pre-Sli sequence.

Original languageEnglish (US)
Pages (from-to)519-533
Number of pages15
JournalMolecular Microbiology
Issue number4
StatePublished - Aug 2009

All Science Journal Classification (ASJC) codes

  • Microbiology
  • Molecular Biology


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