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    In 1980s it was found that addition of N-terminal Arg to proteins induces their ubiquitination and degradation by the N-end rule pathway. While this mechanism applies only to the proteins which also have other features of the N-degron (including a closely adjacent Lys that is accessible for ubiquitination), several test substrates have been found to follow this mechanism very efficiently after ATE1-dependent arginylation. Such property enabled researchers to test ATE1 activity in cells indirectly by assaying for the degradation of such arginylation-dependent substrates. The most commonly used substrate for this assay is E. coli beta galactosidase (beta-Gal) because its activity can be easily measured using standardized colorimetric assays. Here we describe this method, which has served as a quick and easy way to characterize ATE1 activity during identification of arginyltransferases in different species.


    Anna S Kashina. Assaying ATE1 Activity in Yeast by β-Gal Degradation. Methods in molecular biology (Clifton, N.J.). 2015;1337:59-65

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    PMID: 26285881

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