Five viral peptide-HLA-A2 co-crystals. Simultaneous space group determination and X-ray data collection

J Mol Biol. 1994 Jun 17;239(4):581-7. doi: 10.1006/jmbi.1994.1398.


We prepared and crystallized five complexes of the human histocompatibility molecule HLA-A2 with peptides derived from human immunodeficiency virus type 1, human T lymphotropic virus type 1, influenza A virus and hepatitis B virus proteins. Each HLA-A2 complex was refolded in vitro from insoluble proteins produced in bacteria; to crystallize, two of the complexes required seeding with microcrystals of another complex. Maintained at -160 degrees C, single co-crystals of each of the five peptide-HLA-A2 complexes yielded complete X-ray diffraction data sets to a resolution of approximately 2.5 A. After a sufficient number of diffraction peaks were acquired during data collection, the direct analysis of integrated intensities established the point group of the co-crystal, thus allowing an efficient data collection strategy to be designed. The subsequent examination of systematic absences revealed that the five peptide-HLA-A2 co-crystals formed in space groups P1, P2(1), or P2(1)2(1)2(1). Molecular replacement structure solutions yielded unambiguous protein electron density maps, thus confirming the space group determinations. The system of obtaining HLA-A2 co-crystal structures described here is applicable to other crystallographic problems where structures of several related molecules from uncharacterized single crystals are required.

Publication types

  • Research Support, Non-U.S. Gov't
  • Research Support, U.S. Gov't, P.H.S.

MeSH terms

  • Amino Acid Sequence
  • Capsid / chemistry
  • Crystallization
  • Crystallography, X-Ray
  • DNA-Binding Proteins / chemistry
  • HIV Reverse Transcriptase
  • HIV-1 / chemistry
  • HLA-A2 Antigen / chemistry*
  • HLA-A2 Antigen / metabolism
  • Hepatitis B virus / chemistry
  • Humans
  • Influenza A virus / chemistry
  • Molecular Sequence Data
  • Molecular Structure
  • Oligopeptides / chemistry*
  • Oligopeptides / metabolism
  • RNA-Directed DNA Polymerase / chemistry
  • Viral Core Proteins / chemistry
  • Viral Matrix Proteins / chemistry
  • Viral Proteins / chemistry*
  • Viral Proteins / metabolism


  • DNA-Binding Proteins
  • HLA-A2 Antigen
  • Oligopeptides
  • Viral Core Proteins
  • Viral Matrix Proteins
  • Viral Proteins
  • tax-responsive element-binding protein 302
  • HIV Reverse Transcriptase
  • RNA-Directed DNA Polymerase