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Comparative analyses of the thermodynamic RNA binding signatures of different types of RNA recognition motifs


Samatanga, Brighton; Cléry, Antoine; Barraud, Pierre; Allain, Frédéric H-T; Jelesarov, Ilian (2017). Comparative analyses of the thermodynamic RNA binding signatures of different types of RNA recognition motifs. Nucleic Acids Research, 45(10):6037-6050.

Abstract

RNA recognition motifs (RRMs) are structurally versatile domains important in regulation of alternative splicing. Structural mechanisms of sequence-specific recognition of single-stranded RNAs (ssRNAs) by RRMs are well understood. The thermodynamic strategies are however unclear. Therefore, we utilized microcalorimetry and semi-empirical analyses to comparatively analyze the cognate ssRNA binding thermodynamics of four different RRM domains, each with a different RNA binding mode. The different binding modes are: canonical binding to the β-sheet surface; canonical binding with involvement of N- and C-termini; binding to conserved loops; and binding to an α-helix. Our results identify enthalpy as the sole and general force driving association at physiological temperatures. Also, networks of weak interactions are a general feature regulating stability of the different RRM-ssRNA complexes. In agreement, non-polyelectrolyte effects contributed between ∼75 and 90% of the overall free energy of binding in the considered complexes. The various RNA binding modes also displayed enormous heat capacity differences, that upon dissection revealed large differential changes in hydration, conformations and dynamics upon binding RNA. Altogether, different modes employed by RRMs to bind cognate ssRNAs utilize various thermodynamics strategies during the association process.

Abstract

RNA recognition motifs (RRMs) are structurally versatile domains important in regulation of alternative splicing. Structural mechanisms of sequence-specific recognition of single-stranded RNAs (ssRNAs) by RRMs are well understood. The thermodynamic strategies are however unclear. Therefore, we utilized microcalorimetry and semi-empirical analyses to comparatively analyze the cognate ssRNA binding thermodynamics of four different RRM domains, each with a different RNA binding mode. The different binding modes are: canonical binding to the β-sheet surface; canonical binding with involvement of N- and C-termini; binding to conserved loops; and binding to an α-helix. Our results identify enthalpy as the sole and general force driving association at physiological temperatures. Also, networks of weak interactions are a general feature regulating stability of the different RRM-ssRNA complexes. In agreement, non-polyelectrolyte effects contributed between ∼75 and 90% of the overall free energy of binding in the considered complexes. The various RNA binding modes also displayed enormous heat capacity differences, that upon dissection revealed large differential changes in hydration, conformations and dynamics upon binding RNA. Altogether, different modes employed by RRMs to bind cognate ssRNAs utilize various thermodynamics strategies during the association process.

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Additional indexing

Item Type:Journal Article, refereed, original work
Communities & Collections:04 Faculty of Medicine > Department of Biochemistry
07 Faculty of Science > Department of Biochemistry
Dewey Decimal Classification:570 Life sciences; biology
610 Medicine & health
Language:English
Date:2 June 2017
Deposited On:03 Aug 2017 16:23
Last Modified:28 Aug 2017 13:08
Publisher:Oxford University Press
ISSN:0305-1048
Free access at:PubMed ID. An embargo period may apply.
Publisher DOI:https://doi.org/10.1093/nar/gkx136
PubMed ID:28334819
Other Identification Number:PMC5449602

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