Conserved Site

Ribosomal protein S18, conserved site (IPR018275)

Short name: Ribosomal_S18_CS

Description

Ribosomes are the particles that catalyse mRNA-directed protein synthesis in all organisms. The codons of the mRNA are exposed on the ribosome to allow tRNA binding. This leads to the incorporation of amino acids into the growing polypeptide chain in accordance with the genetic information. Incoming amino acid monomers enter the ribosomal A site in the form of aminoacyl-tRNAs complexed with elongation factor Tu (EF-Tu) and GTP. The growing polypeptide chain, situated in the P site as peptidyl-tRNA, is then transferred to aminoacyl-tRNA and the new peptidyl-tRNA, extended by one residue, is translocated to the P site with the aid the elongation factor G (EF-G) and GTP as the deacylated tRNA is released from the ribosome through one or more exit sites [PMID: 11297922, PMID: 11290319]. About 2/3 of the mass of the ribosome consists of RNA and 1/3 of protein. The proteins are named in accordance with the subunit of the ribosome which they belong to - the small (S1 to S31) and the large (L1 to L44). Usually they decorate the rRNA cores of the subunits.

Many ribosomal proteins, particularly those of the large subunit, are composed of a globular, surfaced-exposed domain with long finger-like projections that extend into the rRNA core to stabilise its structure. Most of the proteins interact with multiple RNA elements, often from different domains. In the large subunit, about 1/3 of the 23S rRNA nucleotides are at least in van der Waal's contact with protein, and L22 interacts with all six domains of the 23S rRNA. Proteins S4 and S7, which initiate assembly of the 16S rRNA, are located at junctions of five and four RNA helices, respectively. In this way proteins serve to organise and stabilise the rRNA tertiary structure. While the crucial activities of decoding and peptide transfer are RNA based, proteins play an active role in functions that may have evolved to streamline the process of protein synthesis. In addition to their function in the ribosome, many ribosomal proteins have some function 'outside' the ribosome [PMID: 11290319, PMID: 11114498].

Evidence suggests that, in prokaryotes, the peptidyl transferase reaction is performed by the large subunit 23S rRNA, whereas proteins probably have a greater role in eukaryotic ribosomes. Most of the proteins lie close to, or on the surface of, the 30S subunit, arranged peripherally around the rRNA [PMID: 9281425]. The small subunit ribosomal proteins can be categorised as primary binding proteins, which bind directly and independently to 16S rRNA; secondary binding proteins, which display no specific affinity for 16S rRNA, but its assembly is contingent upon the presence of one or more primary binding proteins; and tertiary binding proteins, which require the presence of one or more secondary binding proteins and sometimes other tertiary binding proteins.

The small ribosomal subunit protein S18 is known to be involved in binding the aminoacyl-tRNA complex in Escherichia coli [PMID: 2647521], and appears to be situated at the tRNA A-site. Experimental evidence has revealed that S18 is well exposed on the surface of the E. coli ribosome, and is a secondary rRNA binding protein [PMID: 9371771]. S18 belongs to a family of ribosomal proteins [PMID: 2179947] that includes: eubacterial S18; metazoan mitochondrial S18, algal and plant chloroplast S18; and cyanelle S18.

GO terms

Biological Process

GO:0006412 translation

Molecular Function

GO:0003735 structural constituent of ribosome

Cellular Component

GO:0005622 intracellular
GO:0005840 ribosome

Contributing signatures

Signatures from InterPro member databases are used to construct an entry.
PROSITE patterns