Building the atomic model for the bacterial flagellar filament by electron cryomicroscopy and image analysis

Koji Yonekura, Saori Maki-Yonekura, Keiichi Namba

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review

33 Citations (Scopus)

Abstract

The bacterial flagellar filament is a helical propeller for bacterial locomotion. It is a well-ordered helical assembly of a single protein, flagellin, and its tubular structure is formed by 11 protofilaments, each in either of the two distinct conformations, L- and R-type, for supercoiling. We have been studying the three-dimensional structures of the flagellar filaments by electron cryomicroscopy and recently obtained a density map of the R-type filament up to 4 Å resolution from an image data set containing only about 41,000 molecular images. The density map showed the features of the α-helical backbone and some large side chains, which allowed us to build the complete atomic model as one of the first atomic models of macromolecules obtained solely by electron microscopy image analysis (Yonekura et al., 2003a). We briefly review the structure and the structure analysis, and point out essential techniques that have made this analysis possible.

Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)407-412
Number of pages6
JournalStructure
Volume13
Issue number3
DOIs
Publication statusPublished - 2005 Mar
Externally publishedYes

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • Structural Biology
  • Molecular Biology

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