Research Article

Cryo-EM structure of the mammalian ATP synthase tetramer bound with inhibitory protein IF1

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Science  14 Jun 2019:
Vol. 364, Issue 6445, pp. 1068-1075
DOI: 10.1126/science.aaw4852

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ATP production under lockdown

Cellular processes must respond to change, often by speeding up, slowing down, or stopping altogether. Adenosine triphosphate (ATP) synthases use a transmembrane proton gradient to produce ATP, but this reaction can go in reverse and needs to be halted when conditions are unfavorable. Jinke Gu et al. purified a tetrameric ATP synthase complex from pig hearts that contained the endogenous inhibitory protein IF1. Targeted refinement yielded high-resolution views of the mammalian ATP synthase trapped in two different rotation states by IF1. The findings suggest that ATP synthase tetramers can be inhibited by at least three different mechanisms.

Science, this issue p. 1068

Abstract

The mitochondrial adenosine triphosphate (ATP) synthase produces most of the ATP required by mammalian cells. We isolated porcine tetrameric ATP synthase and solved its structure at 6.2-angstrom resolution using a single-particle cryo–electron microscopy method. Two classical V-shaped ATP synthase dimers lie antiparallel to each other to form an H-shaped ATP synthase tetramer, as viewed from the matrix. ATP synthase inhibitory factor subunit 1 (IF1) is a well-known in vivo inhibitor of mammalian ATP synthase at low pH. Two IF1 dimers link two ATP synthase dimers, which is consistent with the ATP synthase tetramer adopting an inhibited state. Within the tetramer, we refined structures of intact ATP synthase in two different rotational conformations at 3.34- and 3.45-Å resolution.

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