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Symmetry, stability, and dynamics of multidomain and multicomponent protein systems

Authors
  • Tom L. Blundell
  • N. Srinivasan
Publisher
The National Academy of Sciences of the USA
Publication Date
Dec 10, 1996
Source
PMC
Keywords
Disciplines
  • Biology
  • Economics
License
Unknown

Abstract

Symmetry is commonly observed in many biological systems. Here we discuss representative examples of the role of symmetry in structural molecular biology. Point group symmetries are observed in many protein oligomers whose three-dimensional atomic structures have been elucidated by x-ray crystallography. Approximate symmetry also occurs in multidomain proteins. Symmetry often confers stability on the molecular system and results in economical usage of basic components to build the macromolecular structure. Symmetry is also associated with cooperativity. Mild perturbation from perfect symmetry may be essential in some systems for dynamic functions.

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