* To whom correspondence should be addressed.
Received February 2, 2008; Revision received February 26, 2008
The presence of CTC family proteins is a unique feature of bacterial cells. In the CTC family, there are true ribosomal proteins (found in ribosomes of exponentially growing cells), and at the same time there are also proteins temporarily associated with the ribosome (they are produced by the cells under stress only and incorporate into the ribosome). One feature is common for these proteins - they specifically bind to 5S rRNA. In this review, the history of investigations of the best known representatives of this family is described briefly. Structural organization of the CTC family proteins and their occurrence among known taxonomic bacterial groups are discussed. Structural features of 5S rRNA and CTC protein are described that predetermine their specific interaction. Taking into account the position of a CTC protein and its intermolecular contacts in the ribosome, a possible role of its complex with 5S rRNA in ribosome functioning is discussed.
KEY WORDS: 5S rRNA-binding proteins, CTC proteins, ribosome, translation, Bacteria