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folding in Biological News

New computer simulation helps explain folding in important cellular protein

Athens, Ga. Most parts of living organisms come packaged with ribbons. The ribbons are proteinschains of amino acids that must fold into three-dimensional structures to work properly. But when for any reason the ribbons fold incorrectly, bad things can happen, and in humans misfolded-protein diso...

Protein folding researcher David Baker to receive Sackler Prize in Biophysics

Dr. David Baker, University of Washington (UW) professor of biochemistry and an investigator at the Howard Hughes Medical Research Institute, has been selected to receive the 2008 Raymond & Beverly Sackler International Prize in Biophysics, along with Dr. Martin Gruebele of the University of Illin...

Stanford researchers make first direct observation of 3-D molecule folding in real time

All the crucial proteins in our bodies must fold into complex shapes to do their jobs. These snarled molecules grip other molecules to move them around, to speed up important chemical reactions or to grab onto our genes, turning them "on" and "off" to affect which proteins our cells make. Recen...

Engineers study brain folding in higher mammals

Engineers at Washington University in St. Louis are finding common ground between the shaping of the brain and the heart during embryonic development. Larry A.Taber, Ph.D., the Dennis and Barbara Kessler Professor of Biomedical Engineering, and Phillip Bayly, Ph.D., Hughes Professor of Mechani...

Columbia to award 2008 Horwitz Prize to Arthur Horwich & Ulrich Hartl for cellular protein folding

NEW YORK Columbia University will award the 2008 Louisa Gross Horwitz Prize to F. Ulrich Hartl, M.D., professor and director of the Department of Cellular Biochemistry at the Max Planck Institute of Biochemistry in Germany, and Arthur Horwich, M.D., Eugene Higgins Professor of Genetics, professor...

Researchers reveal insights into hidden world of protein folding

The proteins upon which life depends share an attribute with paper airplanes: Unless folded properly, they just won't fly. But researchers have been puzzled by how the long, linear proteins cranked out by the ribosome factories in a cell are folded into the shapes they must assume to perform th...

Prediction of RNA pseudoknots using heuristic modeling with mapping and sequential folding

An algorithm utilizing structure mapping and thermodynamics is introduced for RNA pseudoknot prediction. The method finds the minimum free energy in the context of the biological folding direction (5 to 3) of RNA sequences. It also identifies information about the flexibility of the RNA. Mappi...

Comprehensive model is first to map protein folding at atomic level

Scientists at Harvard University have developed a computer model that, for the first time, can fully map and predict how small proteins fold into three-dimensional, biologically active shapes. The work could help researchers better understand the abnormal protein aggregation underlying some devasta...

Structure of protective protein in the eye lens revealed

...cids, like a long piece of woolen thread. So-called chaperones help them to fold in the desired three-dimensional form after their production. If this folding process fails, the protein thread becomes an inextricable, useless tangle. Small heat shock proteins (sHsps) are a particularly important group of...

Munich researchers discover new target for tailored antibiotics

...e research team of Professor Groll, Dr. Eppinger, and Dr. Grwert has now succeeded in cracking the closed-state X-ray structure that shows the precise folding pattern of the protein chain and the chemical environment of the active site cavity. The crystal structure opened the door to a detailed examinatio...

Scientists find a biological 'fountain of youth' in new world bat caves

...fespans. The discovery, featured on the cover of the July 2009 print issue of The FASEB Journal ( http://www.fasebj.org ), shows that proper protein folding over time in long-lived bats explains why they live significantly longer than other mammals of comparable size, such as mice. "Ultimately we are tr...

Structural biology scores with protein snapshot

...tion but would not usually affect protein folding, whereas key residues for folding would be located elsewhere in the protein to underpin the scaffold for the ...erent," Sanders said. Sanders and his team, who got interested in protein folding because of their work with DAGK, are now pursuing structural studies of mis...

Researchers observe single protein dimers wavering between two symmetrically opposed structures

... 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 Deni...tures, which they felt might explain puzzling features of the stability and folding speed of these molecules. To test if this was true, Deniz and his group ...

6 young ASU faculty earn NSF Career awards

...gene regulation, transcription initiation and DNA replication. Their binding is characterized by large conformational changes, involving the (partial) folding or unfolding of the protein and the bending or kinking of DNA. Van der Vaart will develop and apply new computational techniques to understand the cau...

Penn biologists discover how 'silent' mutations influence protein production

...is regulation: synonymous mutations determine mRNA folding and thereby the eventual protein level. The resea...he underlying mechanism." The stability of mRNA folding near the ribosomal binding site explained more tha...king machinery. According to their analysis, mRNA folding and associated rates of translation initiation pla...

Caltech scientists control complex nucleation processes using DNA origami seeds

...ooled slowly. "As it cools, the first origami seed and the individual tiles form, as their component DNA molecules begin sticking to each other and folding into shape--but the tiles and origami don't stick to each other yet," Winfree explains. "Then, at a lower temperature, the tiles start to stick to ...

Protein function and chromatin structure methods featured in Cold Spring Harbor Protocols

...date protein might mediate long-range interactions, both in cis and in trans in the nucleus. The 6C assay advances our understanding of chromatin folding and provides an important tool to examine the role of specific proteins in nuclear organization. This method is freely accessible on the website for ...

Unfolding 'nature's origami'

... 'hit and miss' process, with proteins potentially folding wrongly many times before they form the correct st...s, says: "There's a fine balance between a protein folding into the correct shape so that it can carry out its job efficiently and it folding incorrectly, which can lead to disease. Just one w...

Caltech and UCSD researchers shed light on how proteins find their shapes

...paper published in the Journal of the American Chemical Society --with Wolynes's protein-folding models to see if they could come up with the precise folding pattern of cytochrome c, a protein that is part of the mitochondrial electron-transfer chain that turns food into cellular energy. At first the mo...

New open-source software permits faster desktop computer simulations of molecular motion

... Whether vibrating in place or taking part in protein folding to ensure cells function properly, molecules are never still. Simulating molecular motions provides researchers with information critical to designing...

Sulfurous ping-pong in the urinary tract

...ften the case in scientific research. The Glockshuber group studies protein folding mechanisms, where bonds between two sulfur atoms in a protein chain, disulf...ly associated with ASST. This disulfide bridge is a prerequisite for proper folding of this protein and could also play a role in regulating its catalytic acti...

Exploding chromosomes fuel research about evolution of genetic storage

... that, unless neutralized, prevents any attempt at folding and coiling due to electrostatic repulsion. The la...ive charge, and further suggest a critical role in folding the protein as well. The finding raises questio...eus. "Cations play a very important role in the folding and charge neutralization of DNA in all eukaryotes...

Keeping an eye on the surroundings

...al processes; it is an active participant. Protein folding is thus a self-organized process in which the acti...y role. So far, the emphasis in studies of protein folding processes has been on observation of the protein b...changes in the proteinwater network during protein folding in real time. As they report in the journal Angew...

Water is 'designer fluid' that helps proteins change shape, scientists say

...ll known that water plays an important role in the folding process, we usually only look at the motion of the...o look at the motion of water molecules during the folding process." Using a technique called terahertz abso... window on protein-water rearrangements during the folding process, such as breaking protein-water-hydrogen b...

ASBMB taps 8 scientists for top awards

... in the biological sciences. Lindquist is a pioneer in the study of protein folding and has shown that changes in folding can have profound and unexpected influences in fields as wide-ranging as hu...

Mystery of infamous 'New England Dark Day' solved by tree rings

... of that day, which became known as 'New England's Dark Day,' include mentions of midday meals by candlelight, night birds coming out to sing, flowers folding their petals,and strange behavior from animals. The mystery of this day has been solved by researchers at the University of Missouri who say evidence ...

Mystery of infamous 'New England Dark Day' solved by 3 rings

... of that day, which became known as 'New England's Dark Day,' include mentions of midday meals by candlelight, night birds coming out to sing, flowers folding their petals,and strange behavior from animals. The mystery of this day has been solved by researchers at the University of Missouri who say evidence ...

Finding out what the Big Bang and ink jets have in common

...ns out there is more to commonplace everyday events than meets the eye. The folding of paper, or fall of water droplets from a tap, are two such events, both o...way, but also other physical systems involving ridges and tips, such as the folding of proteins during their manufacture in biological cells. One question ...

June GEOSPHERE media highlights

...f use, speed, logistics, and real-time analysis, with competitive accuracy, and it is at least complementary to other methods. Visualization of folding in marble outcrops, Connemara, western Ireland: An application of virtual outcrop technology K.J.W. McCaffrey et al., Earth Sciences Dept., Durham...

NASA presentations at American Geophysical Union Joint Assembly

... Observed During TC4 Time: Fri., May 30, 1:45 p.m. EDT, Room 305 Session: A53B-02 The presenter examines a number of subvisible cirrus cloud cases, folding together trajectory analyses, temperature soundings, and A-Train satellite cloud and water vapor data to fully understand the history of the air in wh...

Seeing Alzheimer's amyloids

...peptide clumps togetheris linked to other neurodegenerative conditions as well, including Parkinsons and Creutzfeldt-Jakob disease. The amyloid way of folding and aggregation seems to be a fundamental property of proteins and peptides explained Grigorieff. We know how most normal proteins fold, but what driv...

Ancient protein offers clues to killer condition

...m, it is not conserved. The fact that the scallop has retained all the functions of its myosin 2 over hundreds of millions of years tells us that this folding is of fundamental functional importance in muscle and that we dont know as much about it as we need to know. In humans, any changes in the compositi...

Micro-origami: USC folds up micrometer-scale 'voxels' for drug delivery

...sure they were the places that folded. Then the folding had to be accomplished. First the researchers bent...blanks in water, and drying them off did the final folding into shape. The experiments spend considerable ..." says the paper, that "the combination of partial folding of structures by magnetic actuation and liquid clo...

Single-celled bacterium works 24-7

...g number of vital processes, including energy metabolism, nitrogen fixation, respiration, the translation of messenger RNA (mRNA) to proteins, and the folding of these proteins into proper configurations. The findings have implications down the road for energy production and storage of clean, alternati...

Green gel

...s. Francis and Esser-Kahn chose to use a protein that fluoresces green to cross-link their polymer chains. Because the protein maintains its normal folding pattern even after attachment to the polymer, the fluorescence is also maintained: The entire gel fluoresces green. This hybrid material has a spec...

Researchers discover the structural alphabet of RNA

...ture of ribonucleic acid (RNA) from sequence data, providing new tools to understand the role of this important class of cellular regulators. The folding of a single-stranded RNA molecule is determined by the interactions between its constituent nucleotides. The classical approach to RNA modelling suffe...

Computer simulations point to key molecular basis of cystic fibrosis

...hat our simulations correlated with known experimental studies is remarkable, Dokholyan said. More importantly, the molecular details of aberrant NBD1 folding provides guidance for the design of small molecule drugs to correct the most prevalent and pathogenic mutation in CFTR. ...

Biophysical Society announces new and notable symposium speakers

...al study to show how a chaperone affects a protein folding pathway. The chaperone was shown to interfere specifically with some folding transitions, and to prevent protein aggregation. L...d these single molecule investigations. Studies of folding pathways have so far mainly focused on proteins in...

MIT reports new twist in microRNA biology

...e development of the embryo. These microRNAs fold into relatively simple hairpin structures, with two stretches of near-perfect complementary sequence folding back onto each other. One of the two 'arms' of a hairpin is then processed into a mature microRNA. The surprising discovery is that for some micr...

Scientists find missing evolutionary link using tiny fungus crystal

...olecule like it, may have been among the first molecules of life, both carrying genetic code that can be transmitted from generation to generation and folding into structures so these molecules could work inside cells," said Purdue structural biologist Barbara Golden. "At some point, RNA evolved and became c...
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