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Structural in Biological News

Researchers discover the structural alphabet of RNA

This release is available in French . A team of bioinformaticians at the Universit de Montral (UdeM) report in the March 6th edition of Nature the discovery of a structural alphabet that can be used to infer the 3D structure of ribonucleic acid (RNA) from sequence data, providing new tool...

Scripps research study reveals structural dynamics of single prion molecules

The new findings, which are being published the week of February 12 in an online edition of the Proceedings of the National Academy of Sciences, offer significant insights into normal folding mechanisms as well as those that lead to abnormal amyloid fibril conversion. The new insights may lead to t...

Researchers image molecular motor structural changes

An international team of researchers has shed new light on how tiny molecular motors that transport materials within cells generate the energy that powers their movements. The knowledge could lead to better understanding of the underlying mechanisms of a range of human disorders such as Down synd...

New technology used to construct the first map of structural variation in the human genome

Beyond the simple stream of one-letter characters in the human genome sequence lies a complex, higher-order code. In order to decipher this level of architecture, scientists have developed powerful new experimental and algorithmic methods to detect copy number variants (CNVs)--defined as large del...

Meditation associated with structural changes in brain

The regular practice of meditation appears to produce structural changes in areas of the brain associated with attention and sensory processing. An imaging study led by Massachusetts General Hospital (MGH) researchers showed that particular areas of the cerebral cortex, the outer layer of the brai...

A new window into structural plasticity in the adult visual cortex

Neuroscientists have known for decades that the adult brain can reorganize neural pathways in response to new experiences, for example, by changing the firing pattern and responses of neurons. But it has remained an open question whether structural changes accompany this functional plasticity. In a...

Conserved amino acids play both structural and mechanistic roles in sandwich-like protein

The question of whether amino acids in sandwich-like proteins are there to stabilize the structure or to speed up the protein-folding process is best answered by "all of the above," according to researchers at Rice University in Houston. This discovery, reported in today's issue of the Proceedin...

Navigating in the ocean of molecules

...tion system to help them steer their way through this sea of possibilities. The program Scaffold Hunter generates a map of the chemical space based on structural criteria and uses it to identify biologically active compounds, e.g. natural substances. The program can also be used to predict new candidate agents ...

Climbing to new heights in the forest canopy

...imbers. Although it is possible to observe the superficial differences among the vines in their climbing methods, it is more difficult to observe structural traits of the stems that play an integral role in the plants' climbing ability. Because climbing plants rely on their other supportive structures as t...

Joint research into an enzyme that causes genetic diseases

...his release is available in Spanish . Researchers from CIC bioGUNE's structural Biology Unit and Columbia University (New York) have conducted a joint rese... models is the correct one. Mikel Valle, a researcher from CIC bioGUNE's structural Biology Unit explains that This is the start of a highly ambitious study wh...

Brain difference in psychopaths identified

...thy. Dr Michael Craig said: 'If replicated by larger studies the significance of these findings cannot be underestimated. The suggestion of a clear structural deficit in the brains of psychopaths has profound implications for clinicians, research scientists and the criminal justice system.' While psychopa...

Structure of protective protein in the eye lens revealed

... in producing αA-crystallins and αB-crystallins recombinantly in bacteria and in obtaining uniform, clearly-structured complexes. A detailed structural analysis of these proteins was carried out in cooperation with the Chemistry Department's Center of Electron Microscopy. The research groups were able...

New computer simulation helps explain folding in important cellular protein

...irst step in studying the dimerization process was to estimate those states in GpA using Wang-Landau. The second step was to sample various energy and structural "observables" of the system to provide insights into the thermodynamics of the entire system. The results could be broadly applied to many fields o...

'Corrective genes' closer thanks to enzyme modification

...uch a crucial role for resistance," says Albert Berghuis, a professor at the McGill University Department of Biochemistry and Canada Research Chair in structural Biology. "We can now harness this insight to further advance therapies for genetic diseases such as leukemia." ...

University has grand designs to build a house of straw

...will be made using 'ModCell' - pre-fabricated panels consisting of a wooden structural frame infilled with straw bales or hemp and rendered with a breathable lime... system. ModCell is the creation of White Design in Bristol and Integral structural Design in Bath. Other partners on the research project are Agrifibre Techno...

DOE-funded research projects win 46 R&D 100 Awards for 2009

...e time and money in situations where information needs to be collected and power sources need to be maintained at remote sites, such as monitoring the structural integrity of dams, bridges and pipelines. The technology has been licensed to Perpetua Power Source Technologies, in Corvallis, OR. (Jointly with Pe...

LSUHSC shows for first time infant inhalation of ultrafine air pollution linked to adult lung disease

...ciated with COPD and steroid-resistant asthma, and also caused proteins to misfold, rendering them dysfunctional. These genetic defects are linked to structural changes in the lung, airflow limitations, and permanent changes in immune responses. "It is no surprise that elevations in airborne particulate mat...

Promising new treatment for Alzheimer's suggested based on Hebrew University research

...lved it by finding the explanation for this increased risk, thereby offering as well a possible new therapeutic solution. At the Wolfson Center for structural Biology at the Hebrew University, the researchers found that the mutation in the BChE-K gene damages the very end, or tail, of the resultant mutant en...

Flexible neck in cell-receptor DC-SIGN targets more pathogens

...DC-SIGN plays a significant role in pathogen targeting and binding. "Our work focuses on how DC-SIGN recognizes HIV and other pathogens, and on what structural features enable it to bind very tightly to those pathogens," said Leckband, the Reid T. Milner Professor of Chemistry at the U. of I. "Once we begin t...

Munich researchers discover new target for tailored antibiotics

...che Universitt Mnchen, and their research team have described in detail the structural basis for just such a reaction step. The cells of virtually all life for...y may spell doom for those bacteria. The TUM researchers have unraveled the structural basis of the terminal step in bacterial isoprene synthesis. The crucial enz...

Researchers gain insight into mechanism underlying Huntington's

...ssociated with these mutations, including Huntington's disease, are called trinucleotide repeat disorders. Findings were published today in Nature structural & Molecular Biology ( http://www.nature.com/nsmb/index.html ). GCT research scientist Caixia Hou, student Nelson Chan, and professor Liya Gu are coau...

New lab test offers better prediction of HIV microbicide safety

...e cells of the vaginal epithelium normally are tightly packed together, forming an impermeable barrier to HIV. If a microbicide disrupts the barrier's structural integrity, HIV would be able to slip through the gaps and infect circulating T cells. To test this theory, Pedro Mesquita, a postdoctoral fellow in...

2 Fred Hutchinson Cancer Research Center scientists receive Presidential Early Career Award

...licts in yeast, fruit flies and other model organisms. His work has offered novel explanations for host-pathogen interactions and for the evolution of structural DNA elements (centromeres) that are critical for proper cell division. Recently, Malik and colleagues have turned their attention to the phenomenon ...

'Normal' cells far from cancer give nanosignals of trouble

...different under the microscope, share very similar structural abnormalities on the nanoscale level. The find...cells by measuring the increase in disorder -- the structural variations -- within the cell. PWS quantifies the ...se without. The cancer cells showed an increase in structural disorder on the nanoscale. For each organ, the ...

Biological warfare in bacteria offers hope for new antibiotics

...olve collaboration between six groups of scientists from the Departments of Biology and Chemistry at the University of York and the Astbury Centre for structural and Molecular Biology, Faculty of Biological Sciences, at the University of Leeds. ...

New test can detect both genetic and chromosomal abnormalities in embryos

...cts the existence of aneuploidy at the same time. "The range of applications is broad and includes single gene defects, abnormal chromosome number, structural chromosome abnormalities and HLA [human leukocyte antigen] matching in 'saviour sibling' cases," said Mr Harton. Karyomapping was developed by Prof...

Structural biology scores with protein snapshot

...vement, investigators in the Vanderbilt Center for structural Biology have used nuclear magnetic resonance (NMR)...eptor structure using both NMR and a complementary structural approach, X-ray crystallography. DAGK may be a t... because of their work with DAGK, are now pursuing structural studies of misfolded membrane proteins that cause ...

DNA template could explain evolutionary shifts

...becoming two a process known as mitosis. Copy number variation involves structural changes in the human genome that result in the deletion of genes or parts o... wrote, "We propose that FoSTeS/MMBIR may be a key mechanism for generating structural variation, particularly nonrecurrent CNV (copy number variation), of the hu...

Researchers observe single protein dimers wavering between two symmetrically opposed structures

...y adopt an extremely large number of structures even with a single chain of amino acids, end up folding themselves to a well defined three-dimensional structural basin," says Deniz." While the concept of a funneled energy landscape explains folding, protein function often requires more than one stable three-dim...

Tips from the journals of the American Society for Microbiology

...dily processed by the immune system, however, they lack the RNA required for virus replication. In this study researchers generated VLPs from the structural proteins of the 1918 H1N1 virus and compared their ability to protect mice and ferrets against a reconstructed 1918 virus and the highly pathogenic av...

Crustacean shell with polyester creates mixed-fiber material for nerve repair

...attach tiny tubes, called nerve guides, that channel the two fragments toward each other. Today's commercial nerve guides are made from collagen, a structural protein derived from animal cells. But collagen is expensive, the protein tends to trigger an immune response and the material is weak in wet environm...

Powe Award supports research on how enzymes enable the pathogenicity of 2 human disease organisms

...in highly active enzymes with FAD bound; this will allow us to elucidate the three-dimensional structure and the mechanism of action," he said. The structural work is being done in collaboration with Andrea Mattevi, professor of molecular biology, who co-ordinates the protein crystallography group at the Uni...

NIH funds $9.5 million for research on HIV and the human innate immune system

... and tap the expertise of researchers in innate immunity, defensin biology, structural chemistry, HIV immunology, dermatology, oral medicine and genetics. Alon... and tap the expertise of researchers in innate immunity, defensin biology, structural chemistry, HIV immunology, dermatology, oral medicine and genetics. Amon...

Advance in understanding cellulose synthesis

...ganize the trafficking and delivery of the cellulose synthase complexes to their place of action. They also looked at the role in trafficking of a structural element called the actin cytoskeleton that helps move organelles and maintains the cell's shape. They found that it appears to be required for the gen...

Protein linked to change in tissue that surround and support breast tumors

... Washington, DC A protein known to be overly active in breast cancer can exist in a form that seems to change the structural composition of mammary tissue, potentially making it more conducive to tumor progression, say researchers from the Lombardi Comprehensive Cancer Cente...

Enigmatic sea urchin structure catalogued

...on, has shown that within that group of marine invertebrates there exists a structural evolutionary interdependence of various internal organs. The research, publ...nal Frontiers in Zoology , demonstrates that the approach of combining all structural data available on a given organ in combination with a broad taxonomic cover...

Muscle atrophy through thick but not thin

...duce movement, but they serve another purpose too. "Skeletal muscle is a protein reservoir that can be mobilized in times of need," says Goldberg. The structural core of a muscle cell is the myofibril, composed of myosin-containing thick filaments and actin-containing thin filaments. During atrophy, this struct...

Scientists uncover mode of action of enzyme linked with several types of cancer

...of altering their genome in order to promote uncontrolled growth. "Cancer cells achieve this by gaining or losing specific chromosomes, or by inducing structural defects in their genome," explains Damien D'Amours, Principal Investigator at IRIC and director of the study, "We discovered that the polo kinase, ove...

Changing climate likely to make 'super weed' even more powerful

... The mesoxalic acid triggers a similar "cellular death cascade" in victim plants as gallic acid does, Bais said, destroying the tubulin and actin, the structural protein in the roots, within minutes of exposure. The scientific team detected the biological concentrations of mesoxalic acid in Delaware wetlands...

Slicing chromosomes leads to new insights into cell division

...microtubules. Microtubules are long, thin tubes that form a central component of the cytoskeleton and the mitotic spindle. They serve as intracellular structural supports and as railways along which molecular motors move cargoes such as chromosomes. Hunt's group hypothesized that polar ejection forces should...
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