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Lateral gate dynamics of the bacterial translocon during cotranslational membrane protein insertion

MPS-Authors
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Mercier,  E.
Department of Physical Biochemistry, MPI for Biophysical Chemistry, Max Planck Society;

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Wang,  X.
Department of Physical Biochemistry, MPI for Biophysical Chemistry, Max Planck Society;

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Maiti,  M.
Department of Physical Biochemistry, MPI for Biophysical Chemistry, Max Planck Society;

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Wintermeyer,  W.
Research Group of Ribosome Dynamics, MPI for biophysical chemistry, Max Planck Society;

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Rodnina,  M. V.
Department of Physical Biochemistry, MPI for biophysical chemistry, Max Planck Society;

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Citation

Mercier, E., Wang, X., Maiti, M., Wintermeyer, W., & Rodnina, M. V. (2021). Lateral gate dynamics of the bacterial translocon during cotranslational membrane protein insertion. Proceedings of the National Academy of Sciences of the USA, 118(26): e2100474118. doi:10.1073/pnas.2100474118.


Cite as: http://hdl.handle.net/21.11116/0000-0009-751E-3
Abstract
During synthesis of membrane proteins, transmembrane segments (TMs) of nascent proteins emerging from the ribosome are inserted into the central pore of the translocon (SecYEG in bacteria) and access the phospholipid bilayer through the open lateral gate formed of two helices of SecY. Here we use single-molecule fluorescence resonance energy transfer to monitor lateral-gate fluctuations in SecYEG embedded in nanodiscs containing native membrane phospholipids. We find the lateral gate to be highly dynamic, sampling the whole range of conformations between open and closed even in the absence of ligands, and we suggest a statistical model-free approach to evaluate the ensemble dynamics. Lateral gate fluctuations take place on both short (submillisecond) and long (subsecond) timescales. Ribosome binding and TM insertion do not halt fluctuations but tend to increase sampling of the open state. When YidC, a constituent of the holotranslocon, is bound to SecYEG, TM insertion facilitates substantial opening of the gate, which may aid in the folding of YidC-dependent polytopic membrane proteins. Mutations in lateral gate residues showing in vivo phenotypes change the range of favored states, underscoring the biological significance of lateral gate fluctuations. The results suggest how rapid fluctuations of the lateral gate contribute to the biogenesis of inner-membrane proteins.