Functional interactions of HslV (ClpQ) with the atpase HslU (ClpY)

Ravishankar Ramachandran, Claudia Hartmann, Hyun Kyu Song, Robert Huber, Matthias Bochtler

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review

30 Citations (Scopus)


HslVU is a bacterial homolog of the proteasome, where HslV is the protease that is activated by HslU, an ATPase and chaperone. Structures of singly and doubly capped HslVU particles have been reported, and different binding modes have been observed. Even among HslVU structures with I-domains distal to HslV, no consensus mode of activation has emerged. A feature in the Haemophilus influenzae HslVU structure, insertion of the C termini of HslU into pockets in HslV, was not seen in all other structures of the enzyme. Here we report site-directed mutagenesis, peptide activation, and fluorescence experiments that strongly support the functional relevance of the C terminus insertion mechanism: we find that mutations in HslV that disrupt the interaction with the C termini of HslU invariably lead to inactive enzyme. Conversely, synthetic peptides derived from the C terminus of HslU bind to HslV with 10-5 M affinity and can functionally replace full HslU particles for both peptide and casein degradation but fail to support degradation of a folded substrate. Thus, the data can be taken as evidence for separate substrate unfoldase and protease stimulation activities in HslU. Enhanced HslV proteolysis could be due to the opening of a gated channel or allosteric activation of the active sites. To distinguish between these possibilities, we have mutated a series of residues that line the entrance channel into the HslV particle. Our mutational and fluorescence experiments demonstrate that allosteric activation of the catalytic sites is required in HslV, but they do not exclude the possibility of channel opening taking place as well. The present data support the conclusion that the H. influenzae structure with I-domains distal to HslV captures the active species and point to significant differences in the activation mechanism of HslV, ClpP, and the proteasome.

Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)7396-7401
Number of pages6
JournalProceedings of the National Academy of Sciences of the United States of America
Issue number11
Publication statusPublished - 2002 May 28
Externally publishedYes

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • General


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