The ATP-dependent Clp protease of Escherichia coli. Sequence of clpA and identification of a Clp-specific substrate

J Biol Chem. 1990 May 15;265(14):7886-93.


The clpA gene, which codes for the ATP-binding subunit of the ATP-dependent Clp protease of Escherichia coli, has been sequenced. The coding region contains a single open reading frame for a protein of 758 amino acids; within the amino acid sequence are two consensus sequences for ATP-binding sites. The sequence of ClpA does not resemble that of other previously described ATPases or Lon, the other sequenced ATP-dependent protease of E. coli, except in the ATP-binding site consensus region. The clpA gene is expressed as a monocistronic message. Primer extension experiments define a major start point of transcription at -183 relative to the start of translation. A rho-independent terminator is located 23 bases beyond the end of the coding region. The ClpA protein is degraded in vivo in a Clp-dependent fashion (t1/2 approximately 60 min). A fusion protein containing the first 40 amino acids of ClpA fused in frame to beta-galactosidase is degraded very rapidly in a clpA+ host (t1/2 approximately 3 min) but not in a clpA- host. This fusion protein is the first Clp-specific substrate described.

Publication types

  • Comparative Study

MeSH terms

  • ATP-Dependent Proteases
  • Adenosine Triphosphate / metabolism
  • Amino Acid Sequence
  • Base Sequence
  • Binding Sites
  • Drug Stability
  • Escherichia coli / enzymology*
  • Escherichia coli / genetics
  • Escherichia coli Proteins*
  • Gene Expression
  • Heat-Shock Proteins*
  • Molecular Sequence Data
  • Molecular Weight
  • Protease La*
  • Protein Conformation
  • Recombinant Fusion Proteins / metabolism
  • Restriction Mapping
  • Sequence Homology, Nucleic Acid
  • Serine Endopeptidases / genetics*
  • Serine Endopeptidases / metabolism
  • Substrate Specificity
  • Transcription, Genetic


  • Escherichia coli Proteins
  • Heat-Shock Proteins
  • Recombinant Fusion Proteins
  • Adenosine Triphosphate
  • ATP-Dependent Proteases
  • Serine Endopeptidases
  • Lon protein, E coli
  • Protease La

Associated data

  • GENBANK/M31045