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Proteins strangle cell during division
Date:11/25/2008

r to proteins in other eukaryotes that have a completely different function. The study shows that the proteins involved in cell division in Sulfolobus acidocaldarius are related to the so-called ESCRT proteins. In eukaryotes, and therefore also in humans, these proteins are involved in protein transport within the cell. It has recently been shown that the HIV virus makes use of the ESCRT transport system to escape from the host cell. Studying the process of cell division in Sulfolobus acidocaldarius could therefore lead to new insights into the processes involving ESCRT proteins, such as HIV particle release.

Evolution

Some theories suggest that in evolutionary terms the Archaea are the predecessors of eukaryotes. This is confirmed by the fact that genes involved in cell division in Sulfolobus acidocaldarius are related to eukaryotic genes. In one way or another, these organisms are related to us humans. The study shows that this resemblance is possibly somewhat closer than at first thought.

Among other things, microbiologist Thijs Ettema has taken a closer look at the resemblance between the cell division proteins and the ESCRT proteins. Ettema carried out his research in Sweden at the University of Uppsala. Ettema obtained his doctorate from Wageningen University and Research Centre in 2005. He was awarded a Rubicon grant from NWO in 2006. Rubicon offers post-docs who have recently gained their doctorate the possibility of gaining experience at a centre of excellence abroad.


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Contact: Dr T.J.G. Ettema, Uppsala University
thijs.ettema@ebc.uu.se
46-184-716-129
Netherlands Organization for Scientific Research
Source:Eurekalert

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