Adenosine triphosphatase from the thermophilic bacterium PS3(TF1) has been studied by solution X-ray scattering. A structural change in TF1 caused by the binding of ADP was observed by examining the difference between the radii of gyration of the unligated and ligated forms. The radius of gyration of the unligated TF1 was found to be 49·5±0·3 Å, and it decreased by approximately 3% after ligation with ADP. The positions and the amplitudes of a subsidiary maximum and a shoulder in the scattering profile showed subtle change on nucleotide binding. The lower limit of the maximum length of TF1 was determined to be 165 Å for the unligated form and 150 Å for the ligated form. The shape analysis of TF1 was performed by model calculations for simple triaxial bodies or their complexes. Among the various models tested, the one that gave the best fit with the experimental data consisted of seven ellipsoids of revolution; six identical ellipsoids with semi-axes: a = b = 18·5 Å and c = 74 Å, arranged hexagonally, and the other with a = b = 28 Å and c = 45 Å, located below the other six on the 6-fold axis. On the basis of this model it was suggested that there is a structural change on ligation with nucleotides, consisting of a shrinkage of the six long ellipsoids by 6% along their major axes.
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