1887

Abstract

Gene regulation at the transcriptional level is a central process in all organisms where DNA-binding transcription factors play a fundamental role. This class of proteins binds specifically at DNA sequences, activating or repressing gene expression as a function of the cell’s metabolic status, operator context and ligand-binding status, among other factors, through the DNA-binding domain (DBD). In addition, TFs may contain partner domains (PaDos), which are involved in ligand binding and protein–protein interactions. In this work, we systematically evaluated the distribution, abundance and domain organization of DNA-binding TFs in 799 non-redundant bacterial and archaeal genomes. We found that the distributions of the DBDs and their corresponding PaDos correlated with the size of the genome. We also identified specific combinations between the DBDs and their corresponding PaDos. Within each class of DBDs there are differences in the actual angle formed at the dimerization interface, responding to the presence/absence of ligands and/or crystallization conditions, setting the orientation of the resulting helices and wings facing the DNA. Our results highlight the importance of PaDos as central elements that enhance the diversity of regulatory functions in all bacterial and archaeal organisms, and our results also demonstrate the role of PaDos in sensing diverse signal compounds. The highly specific interactions between DBDs and PaDos observed in this work, together with our structural analysis highlighting the difficulty in predicting both inter-domain geometry and quaternary structure, suggest that these systems appeared once and evolved with diverse duplication events in all the analysed organisms.

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2017-08-17
2019-10-20
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