The ATPase activity of HscA, a specialized hsp70 molecular chaperone from Escherichia coli, is regulated by the iron-sulfur cluster assembly protein IscU and the J-type co-chaperone HscB. IscU behaves as a substrate for HscA, and HscB enhances the binding of IscU to HscA. To better understand the mechanism by which HscB and IscU regulate HscA, we examined binding of HscB to the different conformational states of HscA and the effects of HscB and IscU on the kinetics of the individual steps of the HscA ATPase reaction cycle. Affinity sensor studies revealed that whereas IscU binds both ADP (R-state) and ATP (T-state) HscA complexes, HscB interacts only with an ATP-bound state. Studies of ATPase activity under single-turnover and rapid mixing conditions showed that both IscU and HscB interact with the low peptide affinity T-state of HscA (HscA++.ATP) and that both modestly accelerate (3-10-fold) the rate-determining steps in the HscA reaction cycle, k(hyd) and k(T-->R). When present together, IscU and HscB synergistically stimulate both k(hyd) (approximately = 500-fold) and k(T-->R) (approximately = 60-fold), leading to enhanced formation of the HscA.ADP-IscU complex (substrate capture). Following ADP/ATP exchange, IscU also stimulates k(R-->T) (approximately = 50-fold) and thereby accelerates the rate at which the low peptide affinity HscA++.ATP T-state is regenerated. Because HscA nucleotide exchange is fast, the overall rate of the chaperone cycle in vivo will be determined by the availability of the IscU-HscB substrate-co-chaperone complex.