Nucleotide-binding domains of human cystic fibrosis transmembrane conductance regulator: detailed sequence analysis and three-dimensional modeling of the heterodimer
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- Callebaut, I., Eudes, R., Mornon, JP. et al. CMLS, Cell. Mol. Life Sci. (2004) 61: 230. doi:10.1007/s00018-003-3386-z
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The cystic fibrosis transmembrane conductance regulator (CFTR) protein is encoded by the gene that is defective in cystic fibrosis, the most common lethal inherited disease among the Caucasian population. CFTR belongs to the ABC transporter superfamily, whose members form macromolecular architectures composed of two membrane-spanning domains and two nucleotide-binding domains (NBDs). The experimental structures of NBDs from several ABC transporters have recently been solved, opening new avenues for understanding the structure/function relationships and the consequences of some disease-causing mutations of CFTR. Based on a detailed sequence/structure analysis, we propose here a three-dimensional model of the human CFTR NBD heterodimer. This model, which is in agreement with recent experimental data, highlights the specific features of the CFTR asymmetric active sites located at the interface between the two NBDs. Moreover, additional CFTR-specific features can be identified at the subunit interface, which may play critical roles in active site interdependence and are uncommon in other NBD dimers.