Cryo-EM density maps showing the 70S ribosome of E. coli in two different functional states related by a ratchet-like motion were analyzed using real-space refinement. Comparison of the two resulting atomic models shows that the ribosome changes from a compact structure to a looser one, coupled with the rearrangement of many of the proteins. Furthermore, in contrast to the unchanged inter-subunit bridges formed wholly by RNA, the bridges involving proteins undergo large conformational changes following the ratchet-like motion, suggesting an important role of ribosomal proteins in facilitating the dynamics of translation.
ASJC Scopus subject areas
- General Biochemistry, Genetics and Molecular Biology