Navigation Links
Statistics are insufficient for study of proteins' signal system
Date:3/26/2008

Ten years ago great attention was attracted by the discovery that it was possible to demonstrate signal transfer in proteins using statistical methods. In an article in the journal Proceedings of the National Academy of Science (PNAS) Uppsala researchers are now presenting results of experiments that contradict the theory.

Proteins govern nearly all chemical processes in the body's cells. A fundamental property of proteins is their ability to transfer signals both within and between proteins. It is known, for example, that such signal transfer is vital to haemoglobin, which transports oxygen in the body. In that instance the mechanism has largely been clarified.

"But in other instances very little is known about the mechanisms or whether such signal transfer even occurs," says Per Jemth, who together with his research group at Uppsala University is studying whether signal transfer also occurs in small proteins.

Nearly ten years ago great attention was attracted by an article published in Science that described a method of demonstrating signal transfer in proteins by comparing their amino acid sequence. The authors recorded a statistical method of showing how certain parts of proteins change together through evolution, i.e. if a change had taken place in one part a change simultaneously took place in another part of the protein. One thus found a network of parts that seemed to belong together, and within this network signal transfer was deemed to take place.

But the Uppsala researchers saw several things that were not right about the results in the much discussed article, and by means of experiments they can now show that no more signals occur in this network than with other parts of the protein. They instead found, completely logically, that nearby parts of the protein interact more with each other than parts that are a long way apart.

"Our results thus question whether statistical methods can demonstrate signal transfer within proteins, and emphasise the importance of precise experiments to substantiate computer-based methods in protein chemistry," says Per Jemth.

The ability to predict proteins' function down to the smallest detail on the basis of their amino acid sequence is a goal that has preoccupied many researchers ever since human DNA became known. This study emphasises that experiments are needed to improve and refine the computerised methods currently in use.

"When theory, computer simulation and experiments provide the same answers the long-term goal has been attained, but there's still a long way to go."


'/>"/>

Contact: Per Jemth
Per.Jemth@imbim.uu.se
46-070-260-5192
Uppsala University
Source:Eurekalert

Related biology news :

1. Image Solutions, Inc. Acquires Zurich Biostatistics, Inc.
2. Bear spray a viable alternative to guns for deterring bears, BYU study shows
3. Multi-institutional study identifies new form of inherited risk of cancer
4. Exposure to low levels of radon appears to reduce the risk of lung cancer, new study finds
5. Study finds pitching mound height affects throwing motion, injury risk
6. First study hints at insights to come from genes unique to humans
7. Community-intervention study links successful town makeover focused on boosting calcium and exercise
8. Study finds health professionals, public unprepared for genomic medicine
9. New study changes conditions for Spanish brown bears
10. Adolescent girls with ADHD are at increased risk for eating disorders, study shows
11. From the backyard to the ocean: New study shows streams act as key nitrogen filters
Post Your Comments:
*Name:
*Comment:
*Email:
(Date:6/9/2016)... -- Paris Police Prefecture ... to ensure the safety of people and operations in several ... tournament Teleste, an international technology group specialised in ... that its video security solution will be utilised by ... safety across the country. The system roll-out is scheduled for ...
(Date:6/2/2016)... Perimeter Surveillance & Detection Systems, Biometrics & ... & Other Service  The latest report from ... of the global Border Security market . Visiongain ... billion in 2016. Now: In November 2015 ... and hardware technologies for advanced video surveillance. ...
(Date:5/12/2016)... , May 12, 2016 WearablesResearch.com ... just published the overview results from the Q1 wave ... the recent wave was consumers, receptivity to a program ... data with a health insurance company. "We ... to share," says Michael LaColla , CEO of ...
Breaking Biology News(10 mins):
(Date:6/27/2016)... 27, 2016  Global demand for enzymes is ... 2020 to $7.2 billion.  This market includes enzymes ... products, biofuel production, animal feed, and other markets) ... biocatalysts). Food and beverages will remain the largest ... consumption of products containing enzymes in developing regions.  ...
(Date:6/27/2016)... ... June 27, 2016 , ... Parallel 6 , the leading ... the Clinical Reach Virtual Patient Encounter CONSULT module which enables both audio ... and clinical trial team. , Using the CONSULT module, patients and physicians can schedule ...
(Date:6/27/2016)... , June 27, 2016   Ginkgo Bioworks ... to industrial engineering, was today awarded as one ... selection of the world,s most innovative companies. Ginkgo ... scale for the real world in the nutrition, ... engineers work directly with customers including Fortune 500 ...
(Date:6/24/2016)... ... 2016 , ... Researchers at the Universita Politecnica delle Marche in Ancona combed ... pleural mesothelioma. Their findings are the subject of a new article on the Surviving ... signposts in the blood, lung fluid or tissue of mesothelioma patients that can help ...
Breaking Biology Technology: