Navigation Links
Tracking prions
Date:6/17/2008

This release is available in German.

Infectious proteins known as prions have been identified as the cause of "mad cow" disease (BSE). The culprits are "incorrectly folded" proteins that can "infect" healthy proteins. The molecular bases for such prion diseases are not yet fully understood. Why are some proteins infectious while others are not? A team headed by Beat Meier (ETH Zurich, Switzerland) and Raimon Sabat (University of Bordeaux, France) has examined two different forms of a prion-forming protein domain by means of NMR spectroscopy. In the journal Angewandte Chemie, the researchers report that the infectious and non-infectious forms differ markedly in their molecular structure.

The word prion is derived from the term Proteinaceous Infectious Particle. These are proteins that can fold in different ways. Pathogenic prions are dangerous because they can convert physiological, non-pathogenic molecules into the diseased form. Often, prions largely consist of -sheet structures. These are accordion-like folded protein ribbons that can easily aggregate into thread-like structures (amyloid fibrils).

The research team took on the prion-forming domain of the fungal protein HET-s. At a pH value of 7under physiological conditionsthis domain forms infectious fibrils. In acidic solution, at pH 3, it also forms fibrils, but these are not infectious.

By using nuclear magnetic resonance spectroscopy (NMR), the team was able to get a closer look at this protein. NMR allows for the evaluation of interactions of the nuclear spins of specific atomic nuclei with each other and their chemical surroundings, which gives information about the structure and dynamics of molecules and molecular fragments.

Here's what the researchers found: The spectra of the pH 7 and pH 3 versions of the prion differ significantly. Both are mainly arranged in the rigid -sheet structure, but up close the structures diverge widely. Particularly striking is the fact that the infectious pH 7 form has highly flexible loops in addition to the rigid domains. These are absent from the non-infectious pH 3 prions.

"The lack of infectiousness of the pH 3 fibrils is thus related to the fact that their molecular structure is significantly different from that of the fibrils formed at physiological pH," the researchers conclude.


'/>"/>

Contact: Beat Meier
beat.meier@nmr.phys.chem.ethz.ch
41-446-324-401
Wiley-Blackwell
Source:Eurekalert  

Related biology news :

1. Tracking feline memories on the move
2. Louisiana Tech researchers investigate tracking, sensors to assist Air Force
3. NIH recognizes Clemson nanotechnology for molecule tracking
4. GestureTek/Imagination Launch AirPoint, Worlds First Hand-Tracking Unit, for Shell Group.
5. Tracking stroke
6. Tracking influenzas every movement
7. Prions and retroviruses -- an unholy alliance?
8. Prions show their good side
Post Your Comments:
*Name:
*Comment:
*Email:
Related Image:
Tracking prions
(Date:1/28/2016)... SAN JOSE, Calif., Jan. 28, 2016 Synaptics (NASDAQ: ... financial results for its second quarter ended December 31, 2015. ... the second quarter of fiscal 2016 increased 2 percent compared to ... the second quarter of fiscal 2016 was $35.0 million, or $0.93 ... Non-GAAP net income for the first quarter of fiscal 2016 ...
(Date:1/22/2016)... http://www.researchandmarkets.com/research/p74whf/global_biometrics ) ... "Global Biometrics Market in Retail Sector 2016-2020" ... --> http://www.researchandmarkets.com/research/p74whf/global_biometrics ) has announced the ... in Retail Sector 2016-2020" report to ... and Markets ( http://www.researchandmarkets.com/research/p74whf/global_biometrics ) has announced ...
(Date:1/18/2016)... JOSE, Calif. , Jan. 18, 2016 /PRNewswire/ ... security software that simplifies the use and access ... technology and go-to-market partnership with American Cyber.  ... Cyber brings extensive experience leading transformational C4ISR and ... implementing and integrating the latest proven technology solutions," ...
Breaking Biology News(10 mins):
(Date:2/9/2016)... ... February 09, 2016 , ... With a presidential election in ... Care Business Conference will bring together over 500 top healthcare leaders for a night ... transformation. The conference, organized by MBA students of the University of Pennsylvania’s Wharton School, ...
(Date:2/9/2016)... ... February 09, 2016 , ... ... innovations on its free and validated Electronic Data Capture (EDC) system ClinCaptureand its ... in Clinical Trials West Coast 2016 Conference in San Mateo, California on February ...
(Date:2/9/2016)... Lawrenceville, NJ (PRWEB) , ... February 09, 2016 ... ... Diane Dorman, former Vice President for Public Policy for the National Organization for ... and patient advocacy groups to ensure their voices are heard throughout the drug ...
(Date:2/9/2016)... 9, 2016 Three-Year Initiative Supports Next ... Take Part in Life-Changing Camp Experiences ... to positively affect the lives of children born with rare diseases, ... SHPG ) is announcing a new initiative designed to positively ... as the future of rare disease care. --> To ...
Breaking Biology Technology: