PMID: 9321402 , Related PDB id: 1SAK
McCoy M, Stavridi ES, Waterman JL, Wieczorek AM, Opella SJ, Halazonetis TD
Hydrophobic side-chain size is a determinant of the three-dimensional structure of the p53 oligomerization domain.
EMBO J. 1997 Oct 15;16(20):6230-6.
The p53 tumor suppressor oligomerization domain, a dimer of two primary dimers, is an independently folding domain whose subunits consist of a beta-strand, a tight turn and an alpha-helix. To evaluate the effect of hydrophobic side-chains on three-dimensional structure, we substituted residues Phe341 and Leu344 in the alpha-helix with other hydrophobic amino acids. Substitutions that resulted in residue 341 having a smaller side-chain than residue 344 switched the stoichiometry of the domain from tetrameric to dimeric. The three-dimensional structure of one such dimer was determined by multidimensional NMR spectroscopy. When compared with the primary dimer of the wild-type p53 oligomerization domain, the mutant dimer showed a switch in alpha-helical packing from anti-parallel to parallel and rotation of the alpha-helices relative to the beta-strands. Hydrophobic side-chain size is therefore an important determinant of a protein fold.