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Higher Order Structure Contributes to Specific Differences in Redox Potential and Electron Transfer Efficiency of Root and Leaf Ferredoxins

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posted on 05.12.2006, 00:00 by Ping Gou, Guy T. Hanke, Yoko Kimata-Ariga, Daron M. Standley, Atsushi Kubo, Isao Taniguchi, Haruki Nakamura, Toshiharu Hase
Plant type ferredoxin (Fd) is a small [2Fe-2S] cluster containing electron-transfer protein with a highly negative redox potential. Higher plants contain different iso-protein types of Fd in roots and leaves, reflecting the difference in redox cascades between these two tissues. We have combined subdomains of leaf and root Fds in recombinant chimeras, to examine structural effects and the relationship between groups of residues on redox potential, electron transfer, and protein−protein interactions. All chimeras had redox potentials that were intermediate to the wild type leaf and root Fds. Surprisingly, the largest differences resulted from exchange of the N-terminus, the region farthest from the redox center. Homology modeling and energy minimization calculations suggest that the N-terminal chimeras may indirectly influence redox potentials by structurally perturbing the active site. Measurements of electron transport and protein interaction indicate that synergistic interaction between the C- and N-terminal of root Fd bestows a specific high affinity for accepting electrons in the root type electron cascade, and that there is discrimination against photosynthetic electron donation to root Fd based on the C-terminus of the molecule. Taken together, the experimental and computational studies support a model in which higher order structure contributes to iso-protein specific interaction and electron-transfer properties.

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