Pushed to extremes: distinct effects of high temperature vs. pressure on the structure of an atypical phosphatase

Read the full article See related articles

Listed in

This article is not in any list yet, why not add it to one of your lists.
Log in to save this article


Protein function hinges on small shifts of three-dimensional structure. Elevating temperature or pressure may provide experimentally accessible insights into such shifts, but the effects of these distinct perturbations on protein structures have not been compared in atomic detail. To quantitatively explore these two axes, we report the first pair of structures at physiological temperature vs. high pressure for the same protein, STEP (PTPN5). We show that these perturbations have distinct and surprising effects on protein volume, patterns of ordered solvent, and local backbone and side-chain conformations. This includes novel interactions between key catalytic loops only at physiological temperature, and a distinct conformational ensemble for another active-site loop only at high pressure. Strikingly, in torsional space, physiological temperature shifts STEP toward previously reported active-like states, while high pressure shifts it toward a previously uncharted region. Together, our work argues that temperature and pressure are complementary, powerful, fundamental macromolecular perturbations.

Article activity feed