Alpha-helix stability in proteins. I. Empirical correlations concerning substitution of side-chains at the N and C-caps and the replacement of alanine by glycine or serine at solvent-exposed surfaces.


Abstract

The importance of amino acid side-chains in helix stability has been investigated by making a series of mutations at the N-caps, C-caps and internal positions of the solvent-exposed faces of the two alpha-helices of barnase. There is a strong positional and context dependence of the effect of a particular amino acid on stability. Correlations have been found that provide insight into the physical basis of helix stabilization. The relative effects of Ala and Gly (or Ser) may be rationalized on the basis of solvent-accessible surface areas: burial of hydrophobic surface stabilizes the protein as does exposure to solvent of unpaired hydrogen bond donors or acceptors in the protein. There is a good correlation between the relative stabilizing effects of Ala and Gly at internal positions with the total change in solvent-accessible hydrophobic surface area of the folded protein on mutation of Ala----Gly. The relationship may be extended to the N and C-caps by including an extra term in hydrophilic surface area for the solvent exposure of the non-intramolecularly hydrogen-bonded main-chain CO, NH or protein side-chain hydrogen bonding groups. The requirement for solvent exposure of the C-cap main-chain CO groups may account for the strong preference for residues having positive phi and psi angles at this position, since this alpha L-conformation results in the largest solvent exposure of the C-terminal CO groups. Glycine in an alpha L-conformation results in the greatest exposure of these CO groups. Further, the side-chains of His, Asn, Arg and Lys may, with positive phi and psi-angles, form a hydrogen bond with the backbone CO of residue in position C -3 (residues are numbered relative to the C-cap). The preferences at the C-cap are Gly much greater than His greater than Asn greater than Arg greater than Lys greater than Ala approximately Ser approximately greater than Asp. The preferences at the N-cap are determined by hydrogen bonding of side-chains or solvent to the exposed backbone NH groups and are: Thr approximately Asp approximately Ser greater than Gly approximately Asn greater than Gln approximately Glu approximately His greater than Ala greater than Val much greater than Pro. These general trends may be obscured when mutation allows another side-chain to become a surrogate cap.(ABSTRACT TRUNCATED AT 400 WORDS) Study holds ProTherm entries: 1669, 1670, 1671, 1672, 1673, 1674, 1675, 1676, 1677, 1678, 1679, 1680, 1681, 1682, 1683, 1684, 1685, 1686, 1687, 1688, 1689, 1690, 1691, 1692, 1693, 1694, 1695, 1696, 1697, 1698, 1699, 1700, 1701, 1702, 1703, 1704, 1705, 1706, 1707, 1708 Extra Details: dG and ddG were measured in the presence of [urea]50% protein folding; barnase; hydrophobic;,hydrophilic

Submission Details

ID: drVa7JgA

Submitter: Connie Wang

Submission Date: April 24, 2018, 8:17 p.m.

Version: 1

Publication Details
Serrano L;Sancho J;Hirshberg M;Fersht AR,J. Mol. Biol. (1992) Alpha-helix stability in proteins. I. Empirical correlations concerning substitution of side-chains at the N and C-caps and the replacement of alanine by glycine or serine at solvent-exposed surfaces. PMID:1404368
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