The CDC34 gene of Saccharomyces cerevisiae encodes a 295-residue ubiquitin-conjugating enzyme (E2). The function of this ubiquitin-conjugating activity remains to be defined as its in vivo substrates are presently unknown. The bacterially expressed and purified Cdc34 protein is shown here to catalyze its own ubiquitination via an intramolecular transfer of its thiol ester-linked ubiquitin to a lysine. In this process, multiple ubiquitin groups are added to Cdc34, and these ubiquitin groups were shown to be arranged predominantly in the form of a single Lys48-specific multiubiquitin chain. Analysis of the hydroxylamine-dependent cleavage of ubiquitin-Cdc34 conjugates at the single Asn-Gly sequence in Cdc34 placed the major ubiquitin linkage site within the C-terminal 215-295 residues of Cdc34. The 4 Lys residues (Lys273, Lys277, Lys293, and Lys294) in this region of CDC34 were substituted by arginine either singly or in combination to produce a set of Cdc34 mutants. Analysis of these Cdc34 mutants for autoubiquitination revealed that the multiubiquitin chain can be formed on any one of these 4 lysines although most Cdc34 conjugates contain a single multiubiquitin chain. Since the presence of a Lys48-specific multiubiquitin chain in protein conjugates is known to target acceptor proteins for degradation in the ubiquitin-mediated proteolytic pathway, the present result raises the possibility that one function of the ubiquitin-conjugating activity in GDC34 may be used to target its own degradation.
|Number of pages
|Journal of Biological Chemistry
|Published - Mar 15 1993
All Science Journal Classification (ASJC) codes
- Molecular Biology
- Cell Biology