A moonlighting function ofMycobacterium smegmatisKu in zinc homeostasis?

Ambuj K. Kushwaha, Dinesh K. Deochand, Anne Grove
  • Protein Science, December 2014, Wiley
  • DOI: 10.1002/pro.2612

KU binds excess zinc to prevent toxicity

What is it about?

Excess zinc is toxic. Cells expressing M. smegmatis KU are less sensitive. KU binds zinc, and this binding depends on two cysteine residues from each monomer of the dimeric KU protein. DNA binding is not compromised as a result. This suggests that KU has acquired a separate function in sequestering excess zinc.

Why is it important?

Illustrates a different mechanism by which cells can respond to zinc toxicity.

The following have contributed to this page: Prof. Anne Grove