Architectural principles for Hfq/Crc-mediated regulation of gene expression

BioRxiv : the Preprint Server for Biology
Ben F LuisiUdo Bläsi


The global regulator Hfq facilitates the action of regulatory RNAs in post-transcription gene regulation in many bacteria. In Pseudomonas aeruginosa , Hfq, in conjunction with the catabolite repression protein Crc, forms a complex that directly inhibits translation of target transcripts during carbon catabolite repression. Here, we describe and validate high-resolution cryo-EM structures of the cooperative assembly of Hfq and Crc bound to a translation initiation site. The core of the assembly is formed through interactions of two cognate RNAs, two Hfq hexamers and a Crc pair. Additional Crc protomers are recruited to form higher-order assemblies with demonstrated in vivo activity. The structures indicate a distinctive RNA conformation and a pattern of repeating motifs that confer regulatory function. This study reveals how Hfq cooperates with a partner protein to regulate translation and provides a structural basis for an RNA code to guide global regulators to interact cooperatively and regulate different RNA targets.

Related Concepts

Enzyme Repression
Gene Expression
Electron Microscopy
Pseudomonas aeruginosa
Transcription, Genetic
Hfq protein, E coli
Gene Function

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