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Journal of Amino Acids
Volume 2011 (2011), Article ID 843206, 16 pages
Review Article

Functional Subunits of Eukaryotic Chaperonin CCT/TRiC in Protein Folding

1Molecular Genetics Laboratory, School of Biotechnology, National Institute of Technology Calicut, Kerala 673601, India
2Department of Biosciences, Jamia Millia Islamia, Jamia Nagar, New Delhi 110025, India
3Department of Biochemistry and Biophysics, University of Rochester Medical Center, NY 14642, USA
4Department of Biology, Alabama A&M University, Normal, AL 35762, USA

Received 15 February 2011; Accepted 5 April 2011

Academic Editor: Shandar Ahmad

Copyright © 2011 M. Anaul Kabir et al. This is an open access article distributed under the Creative Commons Attribution License, which permits unrestricted use, distribution, and reproduction in any medium, provided the original work is properly cited.


Molecular chaperones are a class of proteins responsible for proper folding of a large number of polypeptides in both prokaryotic and eukaryotic cells. Newly synthesized polypeptides are prone to nonspecific interactions, and many of them make toxic aggregates in absence of chaperones. The eukaryotic chaperonin CCT is a large, multisubunit, cylindrical structure having two identical rings stacked back to back. Each ring is composed of eight different but similar subunits and each subunit has three distinct domains. CCT assists folding of actin, tubulin, and numerous other cellular proteins in an ATP-dependent manner. The catalytic cooperativity of ATP binding/hydrolysis in CCT occurs in a sequential manner different from concerted cooperativity as shown for GroEL. Unlike GroEL, CCT does not have GroES-like cofactor, rather it has a built-in lid structure responsible for closing the central cavity. The CCT complex recognizes its substrates through diverse mechanisms involving hydrophobic or electrostatic interactions. Upstream factors like Hsp70 and Hsp90 also work in a concerted manner to transfer the substrate to CCT. Moreover, prefoldin, phosducin-like proteins, and Bag3 protein interact with CCT and modulate its function for the fine-tuning of protein folding process. Any misregulation of protein folding process leads to the formation of misfolded proteins or toxic aggregates which are linked to multiple pathological disorders.