On mechanical force generated by EF-G-catalyzed ribosome translocation

Ping Xie


The determination of the amplitude of the power stroke produced by the elongation factor G-catalyzed ribosome translocation is an important issue, having strong implications for the molecular mechanism of the translocation. A recent paper (Yao et al., Angew. Chem. Int. Ed. 2013, 52, 14041 - 14044) tried to measure the amplitude of this power stroke. We show here that the explanation of the experimental data in the paper could be unreasonable and thus the amplitude of the power stroke determined there could be unreliable. We re-explain the experimental data and show that from these data the amplitude of the power stroke cannot be determined. Moreover, we give a different prediction of the amplitude of the power stroke.


riboosome; mechanical force; EF-G; translation


Chen C, Zhang H, Broitman SL, Reiche M, Farrell I, Cooperman BS & Goldman YE 2013a Dynamics of translation by single ribosomes through mRNA secondary structures. Nat Struct Mol Biol 20 582-588

Chen J, Petrov A, Tsai A, O’Leary SE & Puglisi JD 2013b Coordinated conformational and compositional dynamics drive ribosome translocation. Nat Struct Mol Biol 20 718-727

Feinberg JS & Joseph S 2001 Identification of molecular interactions between P-site tRNA and the ribosome essential for translocation. Proc Natl Acad Sci USA 98 11120-11125

Frank J & Agrawal RK 2000 A ratchet-like inter-subunit reorganization of the ribosome during translocation. Nature 406 318-322

Kontos H, Napthine S & Brierley I 2001 Ribosomal pausing at a frameshifter RNA pseudoknot is sensitive to reading phase but shows little correlation with frameshift efficiency. Mol Cell Biol 21 8657-8670

Lill R, Robertson JM & Wintermeyer W 1989 Binding of the 30-terminus of tRNA to 23S rRNA in the ribosomal exit site actively promotes translocation. EMBO J 8 3933-3938

Lopinski JD, Dinman JD & Bruenn JA 2000 Kinetics of ribosomal pausing during programmed −1 ribosomal frameshifting. Mol Cell Biol 20 1095-1103

Qu X, Wen J-D, Lancaster L, Noller HF, Bustamante C & Tinoco Jr I 2011 The ribosome uses two active mechanisms to unwind messenger RNA during translation. Nature 475 118-121

Savelsbergh A, Katunin VI, Mohr D, Peske F, Rodnina MV & Wintermeyer W 2003 An elongation factor G-induced ribosome rearrangement precedes tRNA-mRNA translocation. Mol Cell 11 1517-1523

Somogyi P, Jenner AJ, Brierley I & Inglis SC 1993 Ribosomal pausing during translation of an RNA pseudoknot. Mol Cell Biol 13 6931-6940

Takyar S, Hickerson RP & Noller HF 2005 mRNA helicase activity of the ribosome. Cell 120 49-58

Tu C, Tzeng T-H & Bruenn JA 1992 Ribosomal movement impeded at a pseudoknot required for frameshifting. Proc Natl Acad Sci USA 89 8636-8640

Wen J-D, Lancaster L, Hodges C, Zeri A-C, Yoshimura SH, Noller HF, Bustamante C & Tinoco Jr I 2008 Following translation by single ribosomes one codon at a time. Nature 452 598-604

Wu P, Nakano S & Sugimoto N 2002 Temperature dependence of thermodynamic properties for DNA/DNA and RNA/DNA duplex formation. Eur J Biochem 269 2821-2830

Xie P 2013a Dynamics of tRNA occupancy and dissociation during translation by the ribosome. J Theor Biol 316 49-60

Xie P 2013b Model of ribosome translation and mRNA unwinding. Eur Biophys J 42 347-354

Xie P 2013c A dynamical model of programmed −1 ribosomal frameshifting. J Theor Biol 336 119-131

Xie P 2014 Dynamics of tRNA translocation, mRNA translocation and tRNA dissociation during ribosome translation through mRNA secondary structures. Eur Biophys J DOI: 10.1007/s00249-014-0957-x

Yao L, Li Y, Tsai T-W, Xu S & Wang Y 2013 Noninvasive measurement of the mechanical force generated by motor protein EF-G during ribosome translocation. Angew Chem Int Ed 52 14041-14044

Full Text: PDF


  • There are currently no refbacks.

Copyright © 2018 Lorem Ipsum Press