We investigated the dissociation of single-ring heptameric GroEL (SR1) by high hydrostatic pressure in the range of 1-2.5 kbar. The kinetics of the dissociation of SR1 in the absence and presence of Mg2+, KCl, and nucleotides were monitored using light scattering. The major aim of this investigation was to understand the role of the double-ring structure of GroEL by comparing its dissociation with the dissociation of the single ring. At all the pressures that were studied, SR1 dissociates much faster than the GroEL 14mer. As observed with the GroEL 14mer, SR1 also showed biphasic kinetics and the dissociated monomers do not reassociate readily back to the oligomer. Unlike the GroEL 14mer, the observed rates for SR1 dissociation are independent of the concentrations of Mg2+ and KCl in the studied range. The effects of nucleotides on the observed rates, in the absence or presence of Mg2+ and KCl, are not very significant. The heterogeneity induced in the GroEL molecule with the double-ring structure by ligands such as Mg2+, KCl, and nucleotides is not observed in the case of SR1. This indicates that the inter-ring negative cooperativity in the double-ring GroEL has a major role in this regard. The results presented in this investigation demonstrate that the presence of a second ring in the GroEL 14mer is important for its stability in an environment where the functional ligands of the chaperonin are available.
ASJC Scopus subject areas