Navigation Links
Muscular protein bond -- strongest yet found in nature
Date:7/20/2009

A research collaboration between Munich-based biophysicists and a structural biologist in Hamburg is helping to explain why our muscles, and those of other animals, don't simply fall apart under stress. Their findings may have implications for fields as diverse as medical research and nanotechnology.

The real strength of any skeletal muscle doesn't start with exercise; it comes ultimately from nanoscale biological building blocks. One key element is a bond involving titin, a giant among proteins. Titin is considered a molecular "ruler" along which the whole muscle structure is aligned, and it acts as an elastic spring when a muscle is stretched.

Titin plays a role in a wide variety of muscle functions, and these in turn hinge on the stability with which it is anchored in a structure called the sarcomeric Z-disk. Research published in 2006 showed this anchor to be a rare palindromic arrangement of proteins that is, it "reads" the same way forward and backward in which two titin molecules are connected by another muscle protein, telethonin. Simulations have pointed toward a network of tight hydrogen bonds linking titin and telethonin as a source of stability. But direct measurements that would further advance this investigation have been lacking, until today's publication of experimental results in the Proceedings of the National Academy of Sciences (PNAS). The authors are Prof. Matthias Rief and Morten Bertz, M.Sc., of the Technische Universitt Mnchen (TUM) who also are members of a Munich-based "excellence cluster" called the Center for Integrated Protein Science and Prof. Matthias Wilmanns of the European Molecular Biology Laboratory in Hamburg.

These first-ever measurements of mechanical stability in the titin-telethonin protein complex show it to be a highly "directed" bond, extremely strong but only along the lines of natural physiological stress. Thus even at the nanoscale, this complex is oriented to resist forces that reflect the macroscale function of the organism contraction and relaxation of skeletal muscles.

Advanced biological and physical techniques gave the researchers a handle on this nanoscale "anchor" basically allowing them to pull on the bond from various directions and measure its performance under stress. Single-molecule force spectroscopy was performed on a custom-built atomic force microscope. Well characterized mechanical "fingerprints" made it possible to distinguish single-molecule events from non-specific interactions as well as from multi-molecule events.

Their measurements confirm that in the direction that corresponds to muscular contraction and relaxation, the titin-telethonin complex is the strongest protein bond found so far in nature. When force was applied in different directions, the proteins of the complex slid apart. The bond can be compared to a mechanical hook that holds fast when pulled upward but otherwise uncouples easily.

The researchers anticipate that directedness of protein bonds will be an important concept in studying a variety of other molecular complexes that nature subjects to mechanical strain in living organisms. Better understanding could potentially inform physiological research and biomedical applications. Such insights might also inspire biomimetic research and design for nanotechnology.


'/>"/>

Contact: Patrick Regan
regan@tum.de
49-892-892-2743
Technische Universitaet Muenchen
Source:Eurekalert

Related biology technology :

1. Insmed Announces Results of IPLEX(TM) Phase II Trial in Myotonic Muscular Dystrophy
2. PTC Therapeutics and Spinal Muscular Atrophy Foundation Announce $8.5 Million Small Molecule Development Collaboration
3. Assay Designs(TM), Inc. and the Spinal Muscular Atrophy Foundation Announce Collaboration To Accelerate the Discovery of New Therapeutics for Spinal Muscular Atrophy (SMA)
4. Palladian Muscular Skeletal Health (formerly Prism Health Networks) to Promote Collaborative, Expanded Practice Model at Major Insurance Conference in June
5. AMT Accesses Technology for Treatment of Duchenne Muscular Dystrophy
6. Families of Spinal Muscular Atrophy; University of California, Irvine Stem Cell Scientist; and California Stem Cell Announce Collaboration for Safety Studies for Stem Cell Therapy in Spinal Muscular Atrophy
7. Insmed Awarded $2.1 Million by Muscular Dystrophy Association
8. Caliper Life Sciences Introduces Staccato Protein Workstation for Automated Protein Sample Preparation & Analysis
9. CEM Wins Presidential Green Chemistry Challenge Award for the Sprint Rapid Protein Analyzer
10. First ASMS Hites Award for Outstanding Research Publication Presented to Prof. Alison Ashcroft for Her Use of Waters Synapt HDMS System to Explore Protein Complexes
11. Assay Designs(TM), Inc. Announces Release of First Available Product for Multiplex Analysis of Heat Shock Proteins
Post Your Comments:
*Name:
*Comment:
*Email:
(Date:5/24/2016)... AVIV, Israel , May 24, 2016   MedyMatch ... providing physicians with artificial intelligence, real-time decision support tools in ... to present at the 2016 Israeli Advanced Technology Industries (IATI) ... of Israel,s 15th National Life Sciences ... 26th at the David Intercontinental Hotel in Tel ...
(Date:5/24/2016)... ... May 24, 2016 , ... ... identity. The new Media Cybernetics corporate branding reflects a results-driven revitalization for a ... image analysis. The re-branding components include a crisp, refreshed logo and a new ...
(Date:5/23/2016)... ... May 23, 2016 , ... ... Precision Farming in 2017 and Beyond. The paper outlines the key trends that ... ag industry. , “We’ve witnessed a lot of highs and lows as the ...
(Date:5/23/2016)... 23, 2016 Oxitec CEO Hadyn ... at 10:15 a.m. ET before the United States House Committee ... mosquitos can play in controlling the spread of the ... virus.      (Logo: http://photos.prnewswire.com/prnh/20150630/227348 ) ... a self-limiting gene. Trials in Brazil , ...
Breaking Biology Technology:
(Date:3/21/2016)... , March 22, 2016 ... recognition with passcodes for superior security   ... a leading provider of secure digital communications services, today ... biometric technology and offer enterprise customers, particularly those in ... facial recognition and voice authentication within a mobile app, ...
(Date:3/15/2016)... March 15, 2016 Yissum Research Development ... technology-transfer company of the Hebrew University, announced today the ... sensing technology of various human biological indicators. Neteera Technologies ... million from private investors. ... the detection of electromagnetic emissions from sweat ducts, enables ...
(Date:3/11/2016)... PUNE, India , March 11, 2016 ... to a new market research report "Image Recognition Market ... by Application (Marketing and Advertising), by Deployment Type (On-Premises ... Global Forecast To 2022", published by MarketsandMarkets, the global ... in 2015 to USD 29.98 Billion by 2020, at ...
Breaking Biology News(10 mins):