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Structure Determination of the Ras-Binding Domain of the Ral-Specific Guanine Nucleotide Exchange Factor Rlf,

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posted on 05.09.1998, 00:00 authored by Dirk Esser, Bettina Bauer, Rob M. F. Wolthuis, Alfred Wittinghofer, Robbert H. Cool, Peter Bayer
Ral-specific guanine nucleotide exchange factors RalGDS, Rgl, and Rlf have been suggested to function as intermediates between Ras and Ral pathways by being able to bind Ras proteins through their C-terminal Ras-binding domains (RBD). The RBDs of RalGDS and of the Ser/Thr kinase c-Raf-1 have been shown to have the same tertiary structure. In contrast to the RBDs of Raf and RalGDS, which bind either Ras or Rap with high affinity, Rlf-RBD has a similar affinity for both GTP-binding proteins. To be able to compare these RBDs on a structural level, we have solved the three-dimensional structure of Rlf-RBD by NMR spectroscopy. The overall tertiary structure of Rlf-RBD shows the ββαββαβ-fold of the ubiquitin superfamily and is very similar to that of RalGDS-RBD. The binding interface of Rlf-RBD to Ras was mapped using chemical shift analysis and indicated a binding mode similar to that in the case of Rap·Raf-RBD. However, comparison of the putatively interacting regions revealed structural differences which are proposed to be responsible for the different substrate affinities of Rlf-, RalGDS-, and Raf-RBD.

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