Navigation Links
Nanoresearchers challenge dogma in protein transportation in cells
Date:9/21/2009

- We now begin to understand how signalling proteins recognize and transport to certain areas of the cell and get a more clear insight on the mechanism of major cellular processes such as cell signalling and growth. This valuable knowledge could be used in the future to understand and cure disease such as depression and Alzheimer's explains Associate Professor Dimitrios Stamou, Nano-Science Center and Department of Neuroscience and Pharmacology, who led the work.

Cells depend critically on their ability to selectively, transport and isolate proteins in specific areas. Earlier ideas that proposed proteins to move around in the cell by recognizing nanoscale patches in their surrounding membrane, also called lipid rafts, are currently under intense debate. However researchers from Nano-Science Center found a new unsuspected mechanism based on the shape of the membrane and just had their results published in the prominent scientific journal Nature Chemical Biology.

Attractive curves on the nanoscale

Like all other materials, cell membranes will crack when bend. Membranes however show a unique property: bending them more and more does not create bigger cracks but simply many more cracks of the same size. It turns out certain important proteins "like" to bind in these cracks therefore the curved parts of a membrane become a good place for them to "meet" each other and thus perform the complicated tasks that need many different proteins working side by side.

- We were very surprised that it is the number of cracks in the membrane that determines how many proteins are bound. Up until now researchers in the field thought that the crucial element was the proteins ability and "desire" to bind to the membrane, also called the affinity. Our data speaks against that, explains Nikos Hatzakis, Nano-Science Center and Department of Chemistry.

The model is general

In cells proteins are travelling around in small vesicles a kind of soap bubbles that like cells are surrounded by membranes. The researchers made vesicles of different sizes in the laboratory and tested how different types of proteins bound to the vesicle membrane. They observed that the smaller the size of the vesicle, and more curved the membrane, the higher the number of cracks available and therefore the greater the number of proteins that can be bound pr. surface area.

- The moment we understood that the most critical parameter in our observations was membrane-shape we immediately thought that maybe we found a general mechanism that would apply to many other types of proteins apart from the ones we were studying. So we tested G proteins that are important signalling proteins attached to the membrane in a different way, using a lipid anchor. Our data confirmed that the model was indeed general, explains Vikram Bhatia, Nano-Science Center and Department of Nanoscience and Pharmacology.

- Unravelling the overarching importance of membrane-shape for the localization of literally hundreds of important signalling proteins will prove critical to our understanding of a plethora of biological process many of which are directly linked to important diseases, emphasises Associate Professor Dimitrios Stamou.


'/>"/>

Contact: Dimitrios Stamou
stamou@nano.ku.dk
454-116-0468
University of Copenhagen
Source:Eurekalert

Related biology news :

1. UC Davis challenge produces a better air conditioner
2. 2000-year-old statue of an athlete sheds light on corrosion and other modern challenges
3. Carnegie Mellons Kris Matyjaszewski recieves EPAs Presidential Green Chemistry Challenge Award
4. Microfossils challenge prevailing views of the effects of Snowball Earth glaciations on life
5. The challenges of avian influenza virus: Mechanism, epidemiology and control
6. Association for Molecular Pathology joins ACLU to challenge gene patents
7. SRI International receives $100,000 Grand Challenges Explorations grant
8. Winners announced in the Elsevier Grand Challenge
9. Major international study challenges notions of how genes are controlled in mammals
10. Climate change: Global risks, challenges and decisions
11. Y chromosome and surname study challenges infidelity myth
Post Your Comments:
*Name:
*Comment:
*Email:
(Date:5/3/2016)... 3, 2016  Neurotechnology, a provider of high-precision ... Automated Biometric Identification System (ABIS) , a complete ... MegaMatcher ABIS can process multiple complex biometric transactions ... of fingerprint, face or iris biometrics. It leverages ... and MegaMatcher Accelerator , which have been ...
(Date:4/19/2016)... DUBAI , UAE, April 20, 2016 ... can be implemented as a compact web-based "all-in-one" system ... in the biometric fingerprint reader or the door interface ... requirements of modern access control systems. The minimal dimensions ... the ID readers into the building installations offer considerable ...
(Date:3/31/2016)... , March 31, 2016   ... ("LegacyXChange" or the "Company") LegacyXChange is excited ... of its soon to be launched online site for ... https://www.youtube.com/channel/UCyTLBzmZogV1y2D6bDkBX5g ) will also provide potential shareholders a ... DNA technology to an industry that is notorious for ...
Breaking Biology News(10 mins):
(Date:5/25/2016)... ... May 25, 2016 , ... The ... by the Office of the National Coordinator for Health IT (ONC) outlining a ... clinically relevant data were available when and where it was needed. The organization ...
(Date:5/25/2016)... SALT LAKE CITY, UTAH. (PRWEB) , ... May 25, 2016 , ... ... create efficiencies in healthcare information exchange, today announced that Charles W. Stellar has been ... served as WEDI’s interim CEO since January 2016. As an executive leader with more ...
(Date:5/25/2016)... ... May 25, 2016 , ... Biohaven Pharmaceutical ... (FDA) has granted the company’s orphan drug designation request covering BHV-4157 for the ... granted by the FDA. , Spinocerebellar ataxia is a rare, debilitating neurodegenerative ...
(Date:5/24/2016)... 2016   MedyMatch Technology Ltd ., the data analytics ... decision support tools in the emergency room, announced today that ... Advanced Technology Industries (IATI) BioMed Conference. The ... 15th National Life Sciences and Technology Week, and is being ... in Tel Aviv, Israel . Gene ...
Breaking Biology Technology: