Intracellular protein phosphorylation by protein kinase C (PKC) plays a major role in the translation of extracellular signals into cellular events. Speculations on the structural basis for PKC activation are based on sequence homology between their cysteine-rich domains (CRD) and the DNA-binding ‘zinc-fingers’. We produced a fragment comprising the second CRD (CRD2) of rat PKC-α and determined its three-dimensional structure in solution by NMR spectroscopy. This revealed that CRD2 adopts a globular fold allowing two non-consecutive sets of zinc-binding residues to form two separate metal-binding sites. The fold is different to those previously proposed and allows insight into the molecular topology of a family of homologous proteins.
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Hommel, U., Zurini, M. & Luyten, M. Solution structure of a cysteine rich domain of rat protein kinase C. Nat Struct Mol Biol 1, 383–387 (1994). https://doi.org/10.1038/nsb0694-383
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