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Solution Structure of a Naturally-Occurring Zinc−Peptide Complex Demonstrates that the N-Terminal Zinc-Binding Module of the Lasp-1 LIM Domain Is an Independent Folding Unit,

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journal contribution
posted on 01.10.1996 by Anna Hammarström, Kurt D. Berndt, Rannar Sillard, Knut Adermann, Gottfried Otting
The three-dimensional solution structure of the 1:1 complex between the synthetic peptide ZF-1 and zinc was determined by 1H NMR spectroscopy. The peptide, initially isolated from pig intestines, is identical in sequence to the 30 N-terminal amino acid residues of the human protein Lasp-1 belonging to the LIM domain protein family. The final set of 20 energy-refined NMR conformers has an average rmsd relative to the mean structure of 0.55 Å for the backbone atoms of residues 3−30. Calculations without zinc atom constraints unambiguously identified Cys 5, Cys 8, His 26, and Cys 29 as the zinc-coordinating residues. LIM domains consist of two sequential zinc-binding modules and the NMR structure of the ZF-1−zinc complex is the first example of a structure of an isolated module. Comparison with the known structures of the N-terminal zinc-binding modules of both the second LIM domain of chicken CRP and rat CRIP with which ZF-1 shares 50% and 43% sequence identity, respectively, supports the notion that the zinc-binding modules of the LIM domain have a conserved structural motif and identifies local regions of structural diversity. The similarities include conserved zinc-coordinating residues, a rubredoxin knuckle involving Cys 5 and Cys 8, and the coordination of the zinc ion by histidine Nδ in contrast to the more usual coordination by Nε observed for other zinc-finger domains. The present structure determination of the ZF-1−zinc complex establishes the N-terminal half of a LIM domain as an independent folding unit. The structural similarities of N- and C-terminal zinc-binding modules of the LIM domains, despite limited sequence identity, lead to the proposal of a single zinc-binding motif in LIM domains. The coordinates are available from the Brookhaven protein data bank, entry 1ZFO.