I've two questions 1. Is free ATP available in the cytoplasm of the cell? 2. In the protein folding funnel, prions and other misfolded proteins are located at the local minima of the graph. If ATP was freely available, it could possibly give a kick to the misfolded structure to cross the energy barrier and this should help the structure to fold along the idealistic path. But such a thing does not happen in reality. Why?
- The energy released by ATP hydrolysis must be coupled, by enzymes, to some other reaction or process in order to be useful. It isn’t magic. There are ATP-dependent chaperones that assist in protein folding.