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Insights into the quaternary association of proteins through structure graphs: a case study of lectins

Brinda, KV and Surolia, Avadhesha and Vishveshwara, Sarawathi (2005) Insights into the quaternary association of proteins through structure graphs: a case study of lectins. In: Biochemical Journal, 391 (Part 1). pp. 1-15.

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The unique three-dimensional structure of both monomeric and oligomeric proteins is encoded in their sequence. The biological functions of proteins are dependent on their tertiary and quaternary structures, and hence it is important to understand the determinants of quaternary association in proteins. Although a large number of investigations have been carried out in this direction, the underlying principles of protein oligomerization are yet to be completely understood. Recently,new insights into this problem have been gained from the analysis of structure graphs of proteins belonging to the legume lectin family. The legume lectins are an interesting family of proteins with very similar tertiary structures but varied quaternary structures. Hence they have become a very good model with which to analyse the role of primary structures in determining the modes of quaternary association. The present review summarizes the results of a legume lectin study as well as those obtained from a similar analysis carried out here on the animal lectins, namely galectins, pentraxins, calnexin, calreticulinand rhesus rotavirus Vp4 sialic-acid-binding domain. The lectin structure graphs have been used to obtain clusters of non-covalently interacting amino acid residues at the intersubunit interfaces. The present study, performed along with traditional sequence alignment methods, has provided the signature sequence motifs for different kinds of quaternary association seen in lectins. Furthermore, the network representation of the lectin oligomers has enabled us to detect the residues which make extensive interactions ('hubs') across the oligomeric interfaces that can be targetted for interface-destabilizing mutations. The present review also provides an overview of the methodology involved in representing oligomeric protein structures as connected networks of amino acid residues. Further, it illustrates the potential of such a representation in elucidating the structural determinants of protein-protein association in general and will be of significance to protein chemists and structural biologists.

Item Type: Journal Article
Publication: Biochemical Journal
Publisher: Portland Press Ltd
Additional Information: Copyright for this article belongs to Portland Press Ltd.
Keywords: galectin;graph-spectral method;interface amino acid clusters and hubs;legume lectin;oligomeric-protein structure graph;pentraxin
Department/Centre: Division of Biological Sciences > Molecular Biophysics Unit
Date Deposited: 09 Dec 2005
Last Modified: 19 Sep 2010 04:21
URI: http://eprints.iisc.ac.in/id/eprint/4351

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