Extensive misfolding in the refolding reaction of alkaline ferrocytochrome C.Biochemistry. 2006 Jul 11; 45(27):8393-401.B
This work describes an extensively misfolded kinetic intermediate in the folding of horse ferrocytochrome c. Under absolute native conditions, the alkali-unfolded protein liganded with carbon-monoxide exhibits misfolding. The misfolded product, apparently an off-pathway intermediate, requires large-scale unfolding in order to have a chance to fold correctly to the native state. The rate of unfolding of the misfolded intermediate limits the overall rate of protein folding. The high level of observed misfolding possibly results from a failure of the polypeptide chain to achieve by stochastic search the transition state relevant for successful folding. Such misfolding may be analogous to the failure of a sizable set of proteins in the intracellular milieu to fold to the functionally active native state.