Temperature Regulates Stability, Ligand Binding (Mg2+ and ATP) and Stoichiometry of GroEL/GroES Complexes

02 November 2021, Version 1
This content is a preprint and has not undergone peer review at the time of posting.


Chaperonins are nanomachines that harness ATP hydrolysis to power and catalyze protein folding, chemical action that is directly linked to the maintenance of cell function through protein folding/refolding and assembly. GroEL and the GroEL-GroES complex are archetypal examples of such protein folding machines. Here, variable-temperature-electrospray ionization (vT-ESI) native mass spectrometry is used to delineate the effects of solution temperature and ATP concentrations on the stabilities of GroEL and GroEL/GroES complexes. The results show clear evidences for de-stabilization of both GroEL14 and GroES7 at temperatures of 50 oC and 45 oC, respectively, substantially below the pre-viously reported melting temperature (Tm ~ 70 oC). This destabilization is accompanied by temperature-dependent reaction products that have previously unreported stoichiometries, viz. GroEL14-GroESx-ATPy, where x = 1, 2, 8 and y = 0, 1, 2, that are also dependent on Mg2+ and ATP concentrations. Variable-temperature native mass spectrometry re-veals new insights about the stability of GroEL in response to several environmental effects: (i) temperature-dependent ATP binding to GroEL (ii) effects of temperature as well as Mg2+ and ATP concentrations on the stoichiome-try of the GroEL-GroES complex, with Mg2+ showing greater effects compared to ATP; and, (iii) a change in the temper-ature-dependent stoichiometries of the GroEL-GroES complex (GroEL14-GroES7 vs GroEL14-GroES8) between 24 to 56 oC. The similarities between results obtained using native MS and cryo-EM (Clare et al., An expanded protein folding cage in the GroEL-gp31 complex. J. Mol. Biol. 2006, 358, 905-11; Ranson et al., Allosteric signaling of ATP hydrolysis in GroEL–GroES complexes. Nat. Struct. Mol. Biol. 2006, 13, 147-152.) underscores the utility of native MS for investiga-tions of molecular machines as well as identification of key intermediates involved in the chaperone-assisted protein folding cycle.


Comments are not moderated before they are posted, but they can be removed by the site moderators if they are found to be in contravention of our Commenting Policy [opens in a new tab] - please read this policy before you post. Comments should be used for scholarly discussion of the content in question. You can find more information about how to use the commenting feature here [opens in a new tab] .
This site is protected by reCAPTCHA and the Google Privacy Policy [opens in a new tab] and Terms of Service [opens in a new tab] apply.