Conformation of methylated GGQ in the Peptidyl Transferase Center during Translation Termination.
ABSTRACT: The universally conserved Gly-Gly-Gln (GGQ) tripeptide in release factors or release factor-like surveillance proteins is required to catalyze the release of nascent peptide in the ribosome. The glutamine of the GGQ is methylated post-translationally at the N5 position in vivo; this covalent modification is essential for optimal cell growth and efficient translation termination. However, the precise conformation of the methylated-GGQ tripeptide in the ribosome remains unknown. Using cryoEM and X-ray crystallography, we report the conformation of methylated-GGQ in the peptidyl transferase center of the ribosome during canonical translational termination and co-translation quality control. It has been suggested that the GGQ motif arose independently through convergent evolution among otherwise unrelated proteins that catalyze peptide release. The requirement for this tripeptide in the highly conserved peptidyl transferase center suggests that the conformation reported here is likely shared during termination of protein synthesis in all domains of life.
Project description:ArfA rescues ribosomes stalled on truncated mRNAs by recruiting release factor RF2, which normally binds stop codons to catalyze peptide release. We report two 3.2 Å resolution cryo-EM structures - determined from a single sample - of the 70S ribosome with ArfA•RF2 in the A site. In both states, the ArfA C-terminus occupies the mRNA tunnel downstream of the A site. One state contains a compact inactive RF2 conformation. Ordering of the ArfA N-terminus in the second state rearranges RF2 into an extended conformation that docks the catalytic GGQ motif into the peptidyl-transferase center. Our work thus reveals the structural dynamics of ribosome rescue. The structures demonstrate how ArfA 'senses' the vacant mRNA tunnel and activates RF2 to mediate peptide release without a stop codon, allowing stalled ribosomes to be recycled.
Project description:Protein synthesis ends when a ribosome reaches an mRNA stop codon. Release factors (RFs) decode the stop codon, hydrolyze peptidyl-tRNA to release the nascent protein, and then dissociate to allow ribosome recycling. To visualize termination by RF2, we resolved a cryo-EM ensemble of E. coli 70S•RF2 structures at up to 3.3 Å in a single sample. Five structures suggest a highly dynamic termination pathway. Upon peptidyl-tRNA hydrolysis, the CCA end of deacyl-tRNA departs from the peptidyl transferase center. The catalytic GGQ loop of RF2 is rearranged into a long ?-hairpin that plugs the peptide tunnel, biasing a nascent protein toward the ribosome exit. Ribosomal intersubunit rotation destabilizes the catalytic RF2 domain on the 50S subunit and disassembles the central intersubunit bridge B2a, resulting in RF2 departure. Our structures visualize how local rearrangements and spontaneous inter-subunit rotation poise the newly-made protein and RF2 to dissociate in preparation for ribosome recycling.
Project description:Termination of protein synthesis on the ribosome is catalyzed by release factors (RFs), which share a conserved glycine-glycine-glutamine (GGQ) motif. The glutamine residue is methylated in vivo, but a mechanistic understanding of its contribution to hydrolysis is lacking. Here, we show that the modification, apart from increasing the overall rate of termination on all dipeptides, substantially increases the rate of peptide release on a subset of amino acids. In the presence of unmethylated RFs, we measure rates of hydrolysis that are exceptionally slow on proline and glycine residues and approximately two orders of magnitude faster in the presence of the methylated factors. Structures of 70S ribosomes bound to methylated RF1 and RF2 reveal that the glutamine side-chain methylation packs against 23S rRNA nucleotide 2451, stabilizing the GGQ motif and placing the side-chain amide of the glutamine toward tRNA. These data provide a framework for understanding how release factor modifications impact termination.
Project description:We report the crystal structure of release factor 2 bound to ribosome with an aminoacyl tRNA substrate analog at the ribosomal P site, at 3.1 A resolution. The structure shows that upon stop-codon recognition, the universally conserved GGQ motif packs tightly into the peptidyl transferase center. Nucleotide A2602 of 23S rRNA, implicated in peptide release, packs with the GGQ motif in release factor 2. The ribose of A76 of the peptidyl-tRNA adopts the C2'-endo conformation, and the 2' hydroxyl of A76 is within hydrogen-bond distance of the 2' hydroxyl of A2451. The structure suggests how a catalytic water can be coordinated in the peptidyl transferase center and, together with previous biochemical and computational data, suggests a model for how the ester bond between the peptidyl tRNA and the nascent peptide is hydrolyzed.
Project description:During translation termination, release factor (RF) protein catalyzes a hydrolytic reaction in the large subunit peptidyl transferase center to release the finished polypeptide chain. While the mechanism of catalysis of peptide release remains obscure, important contributing factors have been identified, including conserved active-site nucleotides and a GGQ tripeptide motif in the RF. Here we describe pre-steady-state kinetic and nucleophile competition experiments to examine RF contributions to the rate and specificity of peptide release. We find that while unacylated tRNA stimulates release in a nondiscriminating manner, RF1 is very specific for water. Further analysis reveals that amino acid Q235 of the RF1 GGQ motif is critical for the observed specificity. These data lead to a model where RFs make two distinct contributions to catalysis--a relatively nonspecific activation of the catalytic center and specific selection of water as a nucleophile facilitated by Q235.
Project description:Bacterial translation termination is mediated by release factors RF1 and RF2, which recognize stop codons and catalyze hydrolysis of the peptidyl-tRNA ester bond. The catalytic mechanism has been debated. We proposed that the backbone amide NH group, rather than the side chain, of the glutamine of the universally conserved GGQ motif participates in catalysis by H-bonding to the tetrahedral transition-state intermediate and by product stabilization. This was supported by complete loss of RF1 catalytic activity when glutamine is replaced by proline, the only residue that lacks a backbone NH group. Here, we present the 3.4 Å crystal structure of the ribosome complex containing the RF2 Q253P mutant and find that its fold, including the GGP sequence, is virtually identical to that of wild-type RF2. This rules out proline-induced misfolding and further supports the proposal that catalytic activity requires interaction of the Gln-253 backbone amide with the 3' end of peptidyl-tRNA.
Project description:A post-translational modification affecting the translation termination rate was identified in the universally conserved GGQ sequence of release factor 2 (RF2) from Escherichia coli, which is thought to mimic the CCA end of the tRNA molecule. It was shown by mass spectrometry and Edman degradation that glutamine in position 252 is N:(5)-methylated. Overexpression of RF2 yields protein lacking the methylation. RF2 from E.coli K12 is unique in having Thr246 near the GGQ motif, where all other sequenced bacterial class 1 RFs have alanine or serine. Sequencing the prfB gene from E.coli B and MRE600 strains showed that residue 246 is coded as alanine, in contrast to K12 RF2. Thr246 decreases RF2-dependent termination efficiency compared with Ala246, especially for short peptidyl-tRNAs. Methylation of Gln252 increases the termination efficiency of RF2, irrespective of the identity of the amino acid in position 246. We propose that the previously observed lethal effect of overproducing E.coli K12 RF2 arises through accumulating the defects due to lack of Gln252 methylation and Thr246 in place of alanine.
Project description:We report the crystal structure of a translation termination complex formed by the Thermus thermophilus 70S ribosome bound with release factor RF2, in response to a UAA stop codon, solved at 3 A resolution. The backbone of helix alpha5 and the side chain of serine of the conserved SPF motif of RF2 recognize U1 and A2 of the stop codon, respectively. A3 is unstacked from the first 2 bases, contacting Thr-216 and Val-203 of RF2 and stacking on G530 of 16S rRNA. The structure of the RF2 complex supports our previous proposal that conformational changes in the ribosome in response to recognition of the stop codon stabilize rearrangement of the switch loop of the release factor, resulting in docking of the universally conserved GGQ motif in the PTC of the 50S subunit. As seen for the RF1 complex, the main-chain amide nitrogen of glutamine in the GGQ motif is positioned to contribute directly to catalysis of peptidyl-tRNA hydrolysis, consistent with mutational studies, which show that most side-chain substitutions of the conserved glutamine have little effect. We show that when the H-bonding capability of the main-chain N-H of the conserved glutamine is eliminated by substitution with proline, peptidyl-tRNA esterase activity is abolished, consistent with its proposed role in catalysis.
Project description:Mitochondrial translation synthesizes key subunits of the respiratory complexes. In Schizosaccharomyces pombe, strains lacking Mrf1, the mitochondrial stop codon recognition factor, are viable, suggesting that other factors can play a role in translation termination. S. pombe contains four predicted peptidyl tRNA hydrolases, two of which (Pth3 and Pth4), have a GGQ motif that is conserved in class I release factors. We show that high dosage of Pth4 can compensate for the absence of Mrf1 and loss of Pth4 exacerbates the lack of Mrf1. Also Pth4 is a component of the mitochondrial ribosome, suggesting that it could help recycling stalled ribosomes.
Project description:Termination and ribosome recycling are essential processes in translation. In eukaryotes, a stop codon in the ribosomal A site is decoded by a ternary complex consisting of release factors eRF1 and guanosine triphosphate (GTP)-bound eRF3. After GTP hydrolysis, eRF3 dissociates, and ABCE1 can bind to eRF1-loaded ribosomes to stimulate peptide release and ribosomal subunit dissociation. Here, we present cryoelectron microscopic (cryo-EM) structures of a pretermination complex containing eRF1-eRF3 and a termination/prerecycling complex containing eRF1-ABCE1. eRF1 undergoes drastic conformational changes: its central domain harboring the catalytically important GGQ loop is either packed against eRF3 or swung toward the peptidyl transferase center when bound to ABCE1. Additionally, in complex with eRF3, the N-terminal domain of eRF1 positions the conserved NIKS motif proximal to the stop codon, supporting its suggested role in decoding, yet it appears to be delocalized in the presence of ABCE1. These results suggest that stop codon decoding and peptide release can be uncoupled during termination.