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dc.contributor.authorHolmstrom, Erik D.
dc.contributor.authorLiu, Zhaowei
dc.contributor.authorNettels, Daniel
dc.contributor.authorBest, Robert B.
dc.contributor.authorSchuler, Benjamin
dc.identifier.citationHolmstrom, E.D., Liu, Z., Nettels, D. et al. Disordered RNA chaperones can enhance nucleic acid folding via local charge screening. Nat Commun 10, 2453 (2019).
dc.descriptionThis work is licensed under a Creative Commons Attribution 4.0 International License.en_US
dc.description.abstractRNA chaperones are proteins that aid in the folding of nucleic acids, but remarkably, many of these proteins are intrinsically disordered. How can these proteins function without a well-defined three-dimensional structure? Here, we address this question by studying the hepatitis C virus core protein, a chaperone that promotes viral genome dimerization. Using single-molecule fluorescence spectroscopy, we find that this positively charged disordered protein facilitates the formation of compact nucleic acid conformations by acting as a flexible macromolecular counterion that locally screens repulsive electrostatic interactions with an efficiency equivalent to molar salt concentrations. The resulting compaction can bias unfolded nucleic acids towards folding, resulting in faster folding kinetics. This potentially widespread mechanism is supported by molecular simulations that rationalize the experimental findings by describing the chaperone as an unstructured polyelectrolyte.en_US
dc.publisherNature Researchen_US
dc.rights© The Author(s) 2019.en_US
dc.subjectComputational biophysicsen_US
dc.subjectIntrinsically disordered proteinsen_US
dc.subjectMolecular biophysicsen_US
dc.titleDisordered RNA chaperones can enhance nucleic acid folding via local charge screeningen_US
kusw.kuauthorHolmstrom, Erik D.
kusw.kudepartmentMolecular Biosciencesen_US
kusw.oaversionScholarly/refereed, publisher versionen_US
kusw.oapolicyThis item meets KU Open Access policy criteria.en_US

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© The Author(s) 2019.
Except where otherwise noted, this item's license is described as: © The Author(s) 2019.