Matching Items (61)

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Recombinant Expression of CapBCA Membrane Proteins from Francisella tularensis

Description

Membrane proteins located within or as attachments to the cell membrane play critical roles in many essential cellular functions and host-pathogen interactions. Knowledge of the structure and function of membrane

Membrane proteins located within or as attachments to the cell membrane play critical roles in many essential cellular functions and host-pathogen interactions. Knowledge of the structure and function of membrane proteins in pathogenic species can allow for the development of specific vaccines and therapeutic agents against the pathogen. Francisella tularensis is an intracellular pathogen that is the causative agent of the severe, life-threatening infection, tularemia, in humans and other small mammals. F. tularensis is prevalent within the environment and is a potential bioterrorism agent due to its high virulence and its ability to be spread easily as an aerosol. The CapBCA membrane protein complex has been identified as a virulence factor of F. tularensis. This project, derived from the Membrane Proteins in Infections Diseases (MPID) Project, aims to successfully express the membrane proteins CapBCA, which are crucial to the pathogenic properties of F. tularensis. To accomplish this goal, methods for in vivo recombinant expression and purification of membrane proteins are in the process of being developed. The expression of the CapA component has been successful for some time, therefore, the goal of this study is to develop an approach toward recombinant in vivo membrane protein expression of both the CapB and CapC components of the CapBCA membrane protein complex. In this study, the CapB and CapC components were expressed for the first time in vivo through the use of the novel MPID vector, pelB-MBP. The expression of the CapB and CapC components will allow for large-scale expressions to commence with the end goal of determining the crystal structures of the individual proteins or the complex. Ultimately, it is hoped that knowledge of these molecular structures can lead to the development of a vaccine or other therapeutic agents against this pathogen.

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Agent

Created

Date Created
  • 2015-05

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Alteration of Proteins and Pigments Influence the Function of Photosystem I Under Iron Deficiency From Chlamydomonas Reinhardtii

Description

Background:
Iron is an essential micronutrient for all organisms because it is a component of enzyme cofactors that catalyze redox reactions in fundamental metabolic processes. Even though iron is abundant

Background:
Iron is an essential micronutrient for all organisms because it is a component of enzyme cofactors that catalyze redox reactions in fundamental metabolic processes. Even though iron is abundant on earth, it is often present in the insoluble ferric [Fe (III)] state, leaving many surface environments Fe-limited. The haploid green alga Chlamydomonas reinhardtii is used as a model organism for studying eukaryotic photosynthesis. This study explores structural and functional changes in PSI-LHCI supercomplexes under Fe deficiency as the eukaryotic photosynthetic apparatus adapts to Fe deficiency.

Results:
77K emission spectra and sucrose density gradient data show that PSI and LHCI subunits are affected under iron deficiency conditions. The visible circular dichroism (CD) spectra associated with strongly-coupled chlorophyll dimers increases in intensity. The change in CD signals of pigments originates from the modification of interactions between pigment molecules. Evidence from sucrose gradients and non-denaturing (green) gels indicates that PSI-LHCI levels were reduced after cells were grown for 72 h in Fe-deficient medium. Ultrafast fluorescence spectroscopy suggests that red-shifted pigments in the PSI-LHCI antenna were lost during Fe stress. Further, denaturing gel electrophoresis and immunoblot analysis reveals that levels of the PSI subunits PsaC and PsaD decreased, while PsaE was completely absent after Fe stress. The light harvesting complexes were also susceptible to iron deficiency, with Lhca1 and Lhca9 showing the most dramatic decreases. These changes in the number and composition of PSI-LHCI supercomplexes may be caused by reactive oxygen species, which increase under Fe deficiency conditions.

Conclusions:
Fe deficiency induces rapid reduction of the levels of photosynthetic pigments due to a decrease in chlorophyll synthesis. Chlorophyll is important not only as a light-harvesting pigment, but also has a structural role, particularly in the pigment-rich LHCI subunits. The reduced level of chlorophyll molecules inhibits the formation of large PSI-LHCI supercomplexes, further decreasing the photosynthetic efficiency.

Contributors

Created

Date Created
  • 2012-04-13

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Towards Characterization of Serum Antibodies Derived from Genetic Immunization and that Recognize Membrane Proteins of Therapeutic Interest

Description

Structure is a critical component in drug development. This project supports antibody- facilitated structure determination for the following eleven membrane proteins: the human histamine and dopamine G protein-coupled receptors (HRH4

Structure is a critical component in drug development. This project supports antibody- facilitated structure determination for the following eleven membrane proteins: the human histamine and dopamine G protein-coupled receptors (HRH4 and DRD2) involved in a wide variety of pathologies such as allergies, inflammation, asthma, pain along with Parkinson's and schizophrenia respectively, the human cystic fibrosis transmembrane conductance regulator (CFTR), the human NaV1.8 voltage-gated sodium ion channel, the human TPC2 two-pore channel, the SARS virus proteins 3a, E and M, the MERS virus protein E and M, and the malarial chloroquine resistance transporter (PfCRT). Serum antibodies against these proteins were generated by genetic immunization, and both in vitro and in vivo expressed membrane proteins were created to characterize the serum antibodies. Plasmid clones were generated for genetic immunization, in vitro protein expression, and in vivo expression (HEK293T transfection). Serum antibodies were generated by genetic immunization of mice by gene gun. Genetic immunization promotes an immune response that allows for the generation of antibodies in the absence of purified protein. In vitro expression was accomplished through the novel technique: in vitro translation with hydrophobic magnetic beads (IVT-HMB). Transfections were performed using the HEK293T cell line to express the protein in vivo. The generated protein was then used in gel electrophoresis and silver stain and/or Western blot analyses to identify and visualize the proteins. These expressed proteins will allow for forthcoming characterization of the generated antibodies. The resulting antibodies will in turn enable structure determination of these important membrane proteins by co-crystallization.

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Agent

Created

Date Created
  • 2017-05

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Structural Discovery for Medically Relevant Proteins:Purification and Characterization of the CapBCA Membrane Protein Complex from Francisella tularensis and New Structural Insights into the Function of Catalytically Active Taspase1: A Novel Anti-Cancer

Description

Developments in structural biology has led to advancements in drug design and vaccine development. By better understanding the macromolecular structure, rational choices can be made to improve factors in such

Developments in structural biology has led to advancements in drug design and vaccine development. By better understanding the macromolecular structure, rational choices can be made to improve factors in such as binding affinity, while reducing promiscuity and off-target interactions, improving the medicines of tomorrow. The majority of diseases have a macromolecular basis where rational drug development can make a large impact. Two challenging protein targets of different medical relevance have been investigated at different stages of determining their structures with the ultimate goal of advancing in drug development. The first protein target is the CapBCA membrane protein complex, a virulence factor from the bacterium Francisella tularensis and the causative agent of tularemia and classified as a potential bioterrorism weapon by the United States. Purification of the individual protein targets from the CapBCA complex is a key and challenging step that has been, so far, a limiting factor towards the structure determination of the whole complex. Here, the purification protocols for the CapB and CapC subunits have been establish, which will allow us to progress towards biophysical and structural studies. The second protein target investigated in this thesis is the catalytically active Taspase1. Taspase1 functions as a non-oncogene addiction protease that coordinates cancer cell proliferation and apoptosis and has been found to be overexpressed in many primary human cancers. Here the structure is presented to 3.04A with the goal of rational drug design of Taspase1 inhibitors. Development of Taspase1 inhibitors has no completion in the drug discovery arena and would function as a new anti-cancer therapeutic. Solving the structures of medically relevant proteins such as these is critical towards rapidly developing treatments and prevention of old and new diseases.

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Agent

Created

Date Created
  • 2020-05

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Bacterial Expression, Correct Membrane Targeting, and Functional Folding of the HIV-1 Membrane Protein Vpu Using a Periplasmic Signal Peptide

Description

Viral protein U (Vpu) is a type-III integral membrane protein encoded by Human Immunodeficiency Virus-1 (HIV- 1). It is expressed in infected host cells and plays several roles in viral

Viral protein U (Vpu) is a type-III integral membrane protein encoded by Human Immunodeficiency Virus-1 (HIV- 1). It is expressed in infected host cells and plays several roles in viral progeny escape from infected cells, including down-regulation of CD4 receptors. But key structure/function questions remain regarding the mechanisms by which the Vpu protein contributes to HIV-1 pathogenesis. Here we describe expression of Vpu in bacteria, its purification and characterization. We report the successful expression of PelB-Vpu in Escherichia coli using the leader peptide pectate lyase B (PelB) from Erwinia carotovora. The protein was detergent extractable and could be isolated in a very pure form. We demonstrate that the PelB signal peptide successfully targets Vpu to the cell membranes and inserts it as a type I membrane protein. PelB-Vpu was biophysically characterized by circular dichroism and dynamic light scattering experiments and was shown to be an excellent candidate for elucidating structural models.

Contributors

Created

Date Created
  • 2017-02-22

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Biophysical Characterization of a Vaccine Candidate Against HIV-1: The Transmembrane and Membrane Proximal Domains of HIV-1 gp41 as a Maltose Binding Protein Fusion

Description

The membrane proximal region (MPR, residues 649–683) and transmembrane domain (TMD, residues 684–705) of the gp41 subunit of HIV-1’s envelope protein are highly conserved and are important in viral mucosal

The membrane proximal region (MPR, residues 649–683) and transmembrane domain (TMD, residues 684–705) of the gp41 subunit of HIV-1’s envelope protein are highly conserved and are important in viral mucosal transmission, virus attachment and membrane fusion with target cells. Several structures of the trimeric membrane proximal external region (residues 662–683) of MPR have been reported at the atomic level; however, the atomic structure of the TMD still remains unknown. To elucidate the structure of both MPR and TMD, we expressed the region spanning both domains, MPR-TM (residues 649–705), in Escherichia coli as a fusion protein with maltose binding protein (MBP). MPR-TM was initially fused to the C-terminus of MBP via a 42 aa-long linker containing a TEV protease recognition site (MBP-linker-MPR-TM).

Biophysical characterization indicated that the purified MBP-linker-MPR-TM protein was a monodisperse and stable candidate for crystallization. However, crystals of the MBP-linker-MPR-TM protein could not be obtained in extensive crystallization screens. It is possible that the 42 residue-long linker between MBP and MPR-TM was interfering with crystal formation. To test this hypothesis, the 42 residue-long linker was replaced with three alanine residues. The fusion protein, MBP-AAA-MPR-TM, was similarly purified and characterized. Significantly, both the MBP-linker-MPR-TM and MBP-AAA-MPR-TM proteins strongly interacted with broadly neutralizing monoclonal antibodies 2F5 and 4E10. With epitopes accessible to the broadly neutralizing antibodies, these MBP/MPR-TM recombinant proteins may be in immunologically relevant conformations that mimic a pre-hairpin intermediate of gp41.

Contributors

Created

Date Created
  • 2015-08-21

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Purification of the P66 Outer Membrane Protein of the Bacterium Borrelia burgdorferi

Description

Lyme disease is a common tick-borne illness caused by the Gram-negative bacterium Borrelia burgdorferi. An outer membrane protein of Borrelia burgdorferi, P66, has been suggested as a possible target for

Lyme disease is a common tick-borne illness caused by the Gram-negative bacterium Borrelia burgdorferi. An outer membrane protein of Borrelia burgdorferi, P66, has been suggested as a possible target for Lyme disease treatments. However, a lack of structural information available for P66 has hindered attempts to design medications to target the protein. Therefore, this study attempted to find methods for expressing and purifying P66 in quantities that can be used for structural studies. It was found that by using the PelB signal sequence, His-tagged P66 could be directed to the outer membrane of Escherichia coli, as confirmed by an anti-His Western blot. Further attempts to optimize P66 expression in the outer membrane were made, pending verification via Western blotting. The ability to direct P66 to the outer membrane using the PelB signal sequence is a promising first step in determining the overall structure of P66, but further work is needed before P66 is ready for large-scale purification for structural studies.

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Agent

Created

Date Created
  • 2021-05

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Coherent soft X-ray diffraction imaging of coliphage PR772 at the Linac coherent light source

Description

Single-particle diffraction from X-ray Free Electron Lasers offers the potential for molecular structure determination without the need for crystallization. In an effort to further develop the technique, we present a

Single-particle diffraction from X-ray Free Electron Lasers offers the potential for molecular structure determination without the need for crystallization. In an effort to further develop the technique, we present a dataset of coherent soft X-ray diffraction images of Coliphage PR772 virus, collected at the Atomic Molecular Optics (AMO) beamline with pnCCD detectors in the LAMP instrument at the Linac Coherent Light Source. The diameter of PR772 ranges from 65–70 nm, which is considerably smaller than the previously reported ~600 nm diameter Mimivirus. This reflects continued progress in XFEL-based single-particle imaging towards the single molecular imaging regime. The data set contains significantly more single particle hits than collected in previous experiments, enabling the development of improved statistical analysis, reconstruction algorithms, and quantitative metrics to determine resolution and self-consistency.

Contributors

Created

Date Created
  • 2017-06-27

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Serial millisecond crystallography of membrane and soluble protein microcrystals using synchrotron radiation

Description

Crystal structure determination of biological macromolecules using the novel technique of serial femtosecond crystallography (SFX) is severely limited by the scarcity of X-ray free-electron laser (XFEL) sources. However, recent and

Crystal structure determination of biological macromolecules using the novel technique of serial femtosecond crystallography (SFX) is severely limited by the scarcity of X-ray free-electron laser (XFEL) sources. However, recent and future upgrades render microfocus beamlines at synchrotron-radiation sources suitable for room-temperature serial crystallography data collection also. Owing to the longer exposure times that are needed at synchrotrons, serial data collection is termed serial millisecond crystallography (SMX). As a result, the number of SMX experiments is growing rapidly, with a dozen experiments reported so far. Here, the first high-viscosity injector-based SMX experiments carried out at a US synchrotron source, the Advanced Photon Source (APS), are reported. Microcrystals (5–20 µm) of a wide variety of proteins, including lysozyme, thaumatin, phycocyanin, the human A[subscript 2A] adenosine receptor (A[subscript 2A]AR), the soluble fragment of the membrane lipoprotein Flpp3 and proteinase K, were screened. Crystals suspended in lipidic cubic phase (LCP) or a high-molecular-weight poly(ethylene oxide) (PEO; molecular weight 8 000 000) were delivered to the beam using a high-viscosity injector. In-house data-reduction (hit-finding) software developed at APS as well as the SFX data-reduction and analysis software suites Cheetah and CrystFEL enabled efficient on-site SMX data monitoring, reduction and processing. Complete data sets were collected for A[subscript 2A]AR, phycocyanin, Flpp3, proteinase K and lysozyme, and the structures of A[subscript 2A]AR, phycocyanin, proteinase K and lysozyme were determined at 3.2, 3.1, 2.65 and 2.05 Å resolution, respectively. The data demonstrate the feasibility of serial millisecond crystallography from 5–20 µm crystals using a high-viscosity injector at APS. The resolution of the crystal structures obtained in this study was dictated by the current flux density and crystal size, but upcoming developments in beamline optics and the planned APS-U upgrade will increase the intensity by two orders of magnitude. These developments will enable structure determination from smaller and/or weakly diffracting microcrystals.

Contributors

Created

Date Created
  • 2017-05-24

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Expression, purification and crystallization of CTB-MPR, a candidate mucosal vaccine component against HIV-1

Description

CTB-MPR is a fusion protein between the B subunit of cholera toxin (CTB) and the membrane-proximal region of gp41 (MPR), the transmembrane envelope protein of Human immunodeficiency virus 1 (HIV-1),

CTB-MPR is a fusion protein between the B subunit of cholera toxin (CTB) and the membrane-proximal region of gp41 (MPR), the transmembrane envelope protein of Human immunodeficiency virus 1 (HIV-1), and has previously been shown to induce the production of anti-HIV-1 antibodies with antiviral functions. To further improve the design of this candidate vaccine, X-ray crystallography experiments were performed to obtain structural information about this fusion protein. Several variants of CTB-MPR were designed, constructed and recombinantly expressed in Escherichia coli. The first variant contained a flexible GPGP linker between CTB and MPR, and yielded crystals that diffracted to a resolution of 2.3 Å, but only the CTB region was detected in the electron-density map. A second variant, in which the CTB was directly attached to MPR, was shown to destabilize pentamer formation. A third construct containing a polyalanine linker between CTB and MPR proved to stabilize the pentameric form of the protein during purification. The purification procedure was shown to produce a homogeneously pure and monodisperse sample for crystallization. Initial crystallization experiments led to pseudo-crystals which were ordered in only two dimensions and were disordered in the third dimension. Nanocrystals obtained using the same precipitant showed promising X-ray diffraction to 5 Å resolution in femtosecond nanocrystallography experiments at the Linac Coherent Light Source at the SLAC National Accelerator Laboratory. The results demonstrate the utility of femtosecond X-ray crystallography to enable structural analysis based on nano/microcrystals of a protein for which no macroscopic crystals ordered in three dimensions have been observed before.

Contributors

Created

Date Created
  • 2014-08-20