Navigation Links
Synthetic protein mimics structure, function of metalloprotein in nature

CHAMPAIGN, Ill. Scientists have designed a synthetic protein that is both a structural model and a functional model of a native protein, nitric-oxide reductase.

The designed protein "provides an excellent model system for studying nitric-oxide reductase, and for creating biocatalysts for biotechnological, environmental and pharmaceutical applications," said University of Illinois chemistry professor Yi Lu, who directed the work.

"Through rational design, we can better understand native proteins, and maybe make one that is more efficient, more stable or more functional," Lu said.

While considerable progress has been made in designing proteins that mimic the structure of native proteins, the goal of reproducing both the structure and the function of native proteins especially metal-containing proteins called metalloproteins has been elusive.

Lu's research group, including lead author Natasha Yeung, and collaborators at the University of Illinois and at Brookhaven National Laboratory, are among the first to design a protein that mimics both the structure and the function of a metalloprotein. The researchers described their work in the journal Nature, published online on Nov. 25.

Nitric-oxide reductase is a key enzyme in the nitrogen cycle that is critical for life. Nitric oxide plays a key role in cell signaling and host-pathogen responses. Therefore, study of nitric-oxide reductase is an important step toward understanding these physiological and pathological processes.

It has been difficult to study nitric-oxide reductase, however, as it is a membrane protein that is not water soluble.

To mimic the structure and function of nitric-oxide reductase, the researchers began with myoglobin, a small muscle protein. Although smaller than nitric-oxide reductase and water soluble, myoglobin can reproduce key features of the native system. Into this scaffold protein the researchers engineered a new iron binding site consisting of three histidines and one glutamate.

In addition to their structural roles, the histidines and glutamate in the active site may also provide the two protons required for nitric oxide reduction.

"The designed protein models both the structure and the function of nitric-oxide reductase, and offers additional insight that the active site glutamate is required for both iron binding and reduction activity," Lu said. "The designed protein also serves as an excellent model for further mechanistic studies of nitric-oxide reductase."


Contact: James E. Kloeppel
University of Illinois at Urbana-Champaign

Related biology news :

1. Synthetic biology offers new opportunities for interdisciplinary collaboration
2. New synthetic molecules trigger immune response to HIV and prostate cancer
3. Sun or shade: Pecan leaves photosynthetic light response evaluated
4. Synthetic cells shed biological insights while delivering battery power
5. Understanding a cells split personality aids synthetic circuits
6. Nanotechnology and synthetic biology: What does the American public think?
7. Synthetic Biology Project receives 2 National Science Foundation grants
8. July 9-10 symposium on synthetic biology
9. Synthetic catalyst mimics natures hydrogen economy
10. Synthetic chemical offers solution for crops facing drought
11. Using combinatorial libraries to engineer genetic circuits advances synthetic biology
Post Your Comments:
(Date:6/9/2016)... -- Perkotek an innovation leader in attendance control systems is proud to announce the introduction ... to make sure the right employees are actually signing in, and to even control ... ... ... ...
(Date:6/7/2016)... 7, 2016  Syngrafii Inc. and San Antonio ... that includes integrating Syngrafii,s patented LongPen™ eSignature "Wet" ... collaboration will result in greater convenience for SACU ... while maintaining existing document workflow and compliance requirements. ... Highlights: ...
(Date:6/2/2016)... June 2, 2016 The Department of ... awarded the 44 million US Dollar project, for the ... Plates including Personalization, Enrolment, and IT Infrastructure , ... the production and implementation of Identity Management Solutions. Numerous renowned ... Decatur was selected for the most ...
Breaking Biology News(10 mins):
(Date:6/23/2016)... Md. , June 23, 2016 A person ... from the crime scene to track the criminal down. ... the U.S. Food and Drug Administration (FDA) uses DNA evidence ... Sound far-fetched? It,s not. The FDA ... sequencing to support investigations of foodborne illnesses. Put as simply ...
(Date:6/23/2016)... Calif. , June 23, 2016  The Prostate Cancer Foundation ... increasingly precise treatments and faster cures for prostate cancer. Members of the Class ... across 15 countries. Read More About the Class of ... ... ...
(Date:6/23/2016)... ... June 23, 2016 , ... Supplyframe, the Industry Network for ... Design Lab . Located in Pasadena, Calif., the Design Lab’s mission is to ... are designed, built and brought to market. , The Design Lab is Supplyframe’s ...
(Date:6/23/2016)... 2016 Apellis Pharmaceuticals, Inc. today announced ... of its complement C3 inhibitor, APL-2. The trials ... dose studies designed to assess the safety, tolerability, ... in healthy adult volunteers. Forty subjects ... single dose (ranging from 45 to 1,440mg) or ...
Breaking Biology Technology: