What determines the degree of compactness of a calcium-binding protein?

The FEBS Journal
Liliane MouawadConstantin T Craescu


The EF-hand calcium-binding proteins may exist either in an extended or a compact conformation. This conformation is sometimes correlated with the function of the calcium-binding protein. For those proteins whose structure and function are known, calcium sensors are usually extended and calcium buffers compact; hence, there is interest in predicting the form of the protein starting from its sequence. In the present study, we used two different procedures: one that already exists in the literature, the sosuidumbbell algorithm, mainly based on the charges of the two EF-hand domains, and the other comprising a novel procedure that is based on linker average hydrophilicity. The linker consists of the residues that connect the domains. The two procedures were tested on 17 known-structure calcium-binding proteins and then applied to 59 unknown-structure centrins. The sosuidumbbell algorithm yielded the correct conformations for only 15 of the known-structure proteins and predicted that all centrins should be in a closed form. The linker average hydrophilicity procedure discriminated well between all the extended and non-extended forms of the known-structure calcium-binding proteins, and its prediction concerning centrins reflected we...Continue Reading


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