Science.gov

Sample records for conserved folding mechanisms

  1. Chorismatase Mechanisms Reveal Fundamentally Different Types of Reaction in a Single Conserved Protein Fold.

    PubMed

    Hubrich, Florian; Juneja, Puneet; Müller, Michael; Diederichs, Kay; Welte, Wolfram; Andexer, Jennifer N

    2015-09-01

    Chorismatases are a class of chorismate-converting enzymes involved in the biosynthetic pathways of different natural products, many of them with interesting pharmaceutical characteristics. So far, three subfamilies of chorismatases are described that convert chorismate into different (dihydro-)benzoate derivatives (CH-FkbO, CH-Hyg5, and CH-XanB2). Until now, the detailed enzyme mechanism and the molecular basis for the different reaction products were unknown. Here we show that the CH-FkbO and CH-Hyg5 subfamilies share the same protein fold, but employ fundamentally different reaction mechanisms. While the FkbO reaction is a typical hydrolysis, the Hyg5 reaction proceeds intramolecularly, most likely via an arene oxide intermediate. Two nonconserved active site residues were identified that are responsible for the different reaction mechanisms in CH-FkbO and CH-Hyg5. Further, we propose an additional amino acid residue to be responsible for the discrimination of the CH-XanB2 subfamily, which catalyzes the formation of two different hydroxybenzoate regioisomers, likely in a single active site. A multiple sequence alignment shows that these three crucial amino acid positions are located in conserved motifs and can therefore be used to assign unknown chorismatases to the corresponding subfamily. PMID:26247872

  2. Mechanics of Curved Folds

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Dias, Marcelo A.; Santangelo, Christian D.

    2011-03-01

    Despite an almost two thousand year history, origami, the art of folding paper, remains a challenge both artistically and scientifically. Traditionally, origami is practiced by folding along straight creases. A whole new set of shapes can be explored, however, if, instead of straight creases, one folds along arbitrary curves. We present a mechanical model for curved fold origami in which the energy of a plastically-deformed crease is balanced by the bending energy of developable regions on either side of the crease. Though geometry requires that a sheet buckle when folded along a closed curve, its shape depends on the elasticity of the sheet. NSF DMR-0846582.

  3. Folding with thermal-mechanical feedback: Discussion

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Treagus, Susan H.; Hudleston, Peter J.

    2009-07-01

    A recent paper in this Journal by Bruce Hobbs, Klaus Regenauer-Lieb and Alison Ord [Hobbs, B., Regenauer-Lieb, K., Ord, A., 2008. Folding with thermal-mechanical feedback. Journal of Structural Geology 30, 1572-1592] presents an alternative theory to the traditional Biot-Ramberg theory for folding of viscous rocks that involves non-equilibrium thermodynamics and thermal-mechanical feedback. The authors convey a strong message throughout their paper that the folds produced by this theoretical and numerical modelling are geologically realistic and provide a better explanation for many natural folds than the traditional theory. They promise the same approach for boudinage, and present this folding paper as part of a "unified framework for rock deformation processes". Readers of the Journal of Structural Geology might be led to conclude that this paper provides a good alternative model for folding of rocks. Our discussion will disagree, on four counts.

  4. Kinetic partitioning mechanism of HDV ribozyme folding

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Chen, Jiawen; Gong, Sha; Wang, Yujie; Zhang, Wenbing

    2014-01-01

    RNA folding kinetics is directly tied to RNA biological functions. We introduce here a new approach for predicting the folding kinetics of RNA secondary structure with pseudoknots. This approach is based on our previous established helix-based method for predicting the folding kinetics of RNA secondary structure. In this approach, the transition rates for an elementary step: (1) formation, (2) disruption of a helix stem, and (3) helix formation with concomitant partial melting of an incompatible helix, are calculated with the free energy landscape. The folding kinetics of the Hepatitis delta virus (HDV) ribozyme and the mutated sequences are studied with this method. The folding pathways are identified by recursive searching the states with high net flux-in(out) population starting from the native state. The theory results are in good agreement with that of the experiments. The results indicate that the bi-phasic folding kinetics for the wt HDV sequence is ascribed to the kinetic partitioning mechanism: Part of the population will quickly fold to the native state along the fast pathway, while another part of the population will fold along the slow pathway, in which the population is trapped in a non-native state. Single mutation not only changes the folding rate but also the folding pathway.

  5. Kinetic partitioning mechanism of HDV ribozyme folding

    SciTech Connect

    Chen, Jiawen; Gong, Sha; Wang, Yujie; Zhang, Wenbing

    2014-01-14

    RNA folding kinetics is directly tied to RNA biological functions. We introduce here a new approach for predicting the folding kinetics of RNA secondary structure with pseudoknots. This approach is based on our previous established helix-based method for predicting the folding kinetics of RNA secondary structure. In this approach, the transition rates for an elementary step: (1) formation, (2) disruption of a helix stem, and (3) helix formation with concomitant partial melting of an incompatible helix, are calculated with the free energy landscape. The folding kinetics of the Hepatitis delta virus (HDV) ribozyme and the mutated sequences are studied with this method. The folding pathways are identified by recursive searching the states with high net flux-in(out) population starting from the native state. The theory results are in good agreement with that of the experiments. The results indicate that the bi-phasic folding kinetics for the wt HDV sequence is ascribed to the kinetic partitioning mechanism: Part of the population will quickly fold to the native state along the fast pathway, while another part of the population will fold along the slow pathway, in which the population is trapped in a non-native state. Single mutation not only changes the folding rate but also the folding pathway.

  6. Dependence of Internal Friction on Folding Mechanism

    PubMed Central

    2016-01-01

    An outstanding challenge in protein folding is understanding the origin of “internal friction” in folding dynamics, experimentally identified from the dependence of folding rates on solvent viscosity. A possible origin suggested by simulation is the crossing of local torsion barriers. However, it was unclear why internal friction varied from protein to protein or for different folding barriers of the same protein. Using all-atom simulations with variable solvent viscosity, in conjunction with transition-path sampling to obtain reaction rates and analysis via Markov state models, we are able to determine the internal friction in the folding of several peptides and miniproteins. In agreement with experiment, we find that the folding events with greatest internal friction are those that mainly involve helix formation, while hairpin formation exhibits little or no evidence of friction. Via a careful analysis of folding transition paths, we show that internal friction arises when torsion angle changes are an important part of the folding mechanism near the folding free energy barrier. These results suggest an explanation for the variation of internal friction effects from protein to protein and across the energy landscape of the same protein. PMID:25721133

  7. Protein Folding and Mechanisms of Proteostasis

    PubMed Central

    Díaz-Villanueva, José Fernando; Díaz-Molina, Raúl; García-González, Victor

    2015-01-01

    Highly sophisticated mechanisms that modulate protein structure and function, which involve synthesis and degradation, have evolved to maintain cellular homeostasis. Perturbations in these mechanisms can lead to protein dysfunction as well as deleterious cell processes. Therefore in recent years the etiology of a great number of diseases has been attributed to failures in mechanisms that modulate protein structure. Interconnections among metabolic and cell signaling pathways are critical for homeostasis to converge on mechanisms associated with protein folding as well as for the preservation of the native structure of proteins. For instance, imbalances in secretory protein synthesis pathways lead to a condition known as endoplasmic reticulum (ER) stress which elicits the adaptive unfolded protein response (UPR). Therefore, taking this into consideration, a key part of this paper is developed around the protein folding phenomenon, and cellular mechanisms which support this pivotal condition. We provide an overview of chaperone protein function, UPR via, spatial compartmentalization of protein folding, proteasome role, autophagy, as well as the intertwining between these processes. Several diseases are known to have a molecular etiology in the malfunction of mechanisms responsible for protein folding and in the shielding of native structure, phenomena which ultimately lead to misfolded protein accumulation. This review centers on our current knowledge about pathways that modulate protein folding, and cell responses involved in protein homeostasis. PMID:26225966

  8. Protein Folding and Mechanisms of Proteostasis.

    PubMed

    Díaz-Villanueva, José Fernando; Díaz-Molina, Raúl; García-González, Victor

    2015-01-01

    Highly sophisticated mechanisms that modulate protein structure and function, which involve synthesis and degradation, have evolved to maintain cellular homeostasis. Perturbations in these mechanisms can lead to protein dysfunction as well as deleterious cell processes. Therefore in recent years the etiology of a great number of diseases has been attributed to failures in mechanisms that modulate protein structure. Interconnections among metabolic and cell signaling pathways are critical for homeostasis to converge on mechanisms associated with protein folding as well as for the preservation of the native structure of proteins. For instance, imbalances in secretory protein synthesis pathways lead to a condition known as endoplasmic reticulum (ER) stress which elicits the adaptive unfolded protein response (UPR). Therefore, taking this into consideration, a key part of this paper is developed around the protein folding phenomenon, and cellular mechanisms which support this pivotal condition. We provide an overview of chaperone protein function, UPR via, spatial compartmentalization of protein folding, proteasome role, autophagy, as well as the intertwining between these processes. Several diseases are known to have a molecular etiology in the malfunction of mechanisms responsible for protein folding and in the shielding of native structure, phenomena which ultimately lead to misfolded protein accumulation. This review centers on our current knowledge about pathways that modulate protein folding, and cell responses involved in protein homeostasis. PMID:26225966

  9. Mechanical Models of Fault-Related Folding

    SciTech Connect

    Johnson, A. M.

    2003-01-09

    The subject of the proposed research is fault-related folding and ground deformation. The results are relevant to oil-producing structures throughout the world, to understanding of damage that has been observed along and near earthquake ruptures, and to earthquake-producing structures in California and other tectonically-active areas. The objectives of the proposed research were to provide both a unified, mechanical infrastructure for studies of fault-related foldings and to present the results in computer programs that have graphical users interfaces (GUIs) so that structural geologists and geophysicists can model a wide variety of fault-related folds (FaRFs).

  10. Protein folding and misfolding: mechanism and principles.

    PubMed

    Englander, S Walter; Mayne, Leland; Krishna, Mallela M G

    2007-11-01

    Two fundamentally different views of how proteins fold are now being debated. Do proteins fold through multiple unpredictable routes directed only by the energetically downhill nature of the folding landscape or do they fold through specific intermediates in a defined pathway that systematically puts predetermined pieces of the target native protein into place? It has now become possible to determine the structure of protein folding intermediates, evaluate their equilibrium and kinetic parameters, and establish their pathway relationships. Results obtained for many proteins have serendipitously revealed a new dimension of protein structure. Cooperative structural units of the native protein, called foldons, unfold and refold repeatedly even under native conditions. Much evidence obtained by hydrogen exchange and other methods now indicates that cooperative foldon units and not individual amino acids account for the unit steps in protein folding pathways. The formation of foldons and their ordered pathway assembly systematically puts native-like foldon building blocks into place, guided by a sequential stabilization mechanism in which prior native-like structure templates the formation of incoming foldons with complementary structure. Thus the same propensities and interactions that specify the final native state, encoded in the amino-acid sequence of every protein, determine the pathway for getting there. Experimental observations that have been interpreted differently, in terms of multiple independent pathways, appear to be due to chance misfolding errors that cause different population fractions to block at different pathway points, populate different pathway intermediates, and fold at different rates. This paper summarizes the experimental basis for these three determining principles and their consequences. Cooperative native-like foldon units and the sequential stabilization process together generate predetermined stepwise pathways. Optional misfolding errors

  11. Folded membrane dialyzer with mechanically sealed edges

    DOEpatents

    Markley, Finley W.

    1976-01-01

    A semipermeable membrane is folded in accordion fashion to form a stack of pleats and the edges are sealed so as to isolate the opposite surfaces of the membrane. The stack is contained within a case that provides ports for flow of blood in contact with one surface of the membrane through channels formed by the pleats and also provides ports for flow of a dialysate through channels formed by the pleats in contact with the other surface of the membrane. The serpentine side edges of the membrane are sealed by a solidified plastic material, whereas effective mechanical means are provided to seal the end edges of the folded membrane. The mechanical means include a clamping strip which biases case sealing flanges into a sealed relationship with end portions of the membrane near the end edges, which portions extend from the stack and between the sealing flanges.

  12. Evolutionarily Conserved Linkage between Enzyme Fold, Flexibility, and Catalysis

    PubMed Central

    Ramanathan, Arvind; Agarwal, Pratul K.

    2011-01-01

    Proteins are intrinsically flexible molecules. The role of internal motions in a protein's designated function is widely debated. The role of protein structure in enzyme catalysis is well established, and conservation of structural features provides vital clues to their role in function. Recently, it has been proposed that the protein function may involve multiple conformations: the observed deviations are not random thermodynamic fluctuations; rather, flexibility may be closely linked to protein function, including enzyme catalysis. We hypothesize that the argument of conservation of important structural features can also be extended to identification of protein flexibility in interconnection with enzyme function. Three classes of enzymes (prolyl-peptidyl isomerase, oxidoreductase, and nuclease) that catalyze diverse chemical reactions have been examined using detailed computational modeling. For each class, the identification and characterization of the internal protein motions coupled to the chemical step in enzyme mechanisms in multiple species show identical enzyme conformational fluctuations. In addition to the active-site residues, motions of protein surface loop regions (>10 Å away) are observed to be identical across species, and networks of conserved interactions/residues connect these highly flexible surface regions to the active-site residues that make direct contact with substrates. More interestingly, examination of reaction-coupled motions in non-homologous enzyme systems (with no structural or sequence similarity) that catalyze the same biochemical reaction shows motions that induce remarkably similar changes in the enzyme–substrate interactions during catalysis. The results indicate that the reaction-coupled flexibility is a conserved aspect of the enzyme molecular architecture. Protein motions in distal areas of homologous and non-homologous enzyme systems mediate similar changes in the active-site enzyme–substrate interactions, thereby

  13. Evolutionarily conserved linkage between enzyme fold, flexibility, and catalysis

    SciTech Connect

    Ramanathan, Arvind; Agarwal, Pratul K

    2011-01-01

    Proteins are intrinsically flexible molecules. The role of internal motions in a protein's designated function is widely debated. The role of protein structure in enzyme catalysis is well established, and conservation of structural features provides vital clues to their role in function. Recently, it has been proposed that the protein function may involve multiple conformations: the observed deviations are not random thermodynamic fluctuations; rather, flexibility may be closely linked to protein function, including enzyme catalysis. We hypothesize that the argument of conservation of important structural features can also be extended to identification of protein flexibility in interconnection with enzyme function. Three classes of enzymes (prolyl-peptidyl isomerase, oxidoreductase, and nuclease) that catalyze diverse chemical reactions have been examined using detailed computational modeling. For each class, the identification and characterization of the internal protein motions coupled to the chemical step in enzyme mechanisms in multiple species show identical enzyme conformational fluctuations. In addition to the active-site residues, motions of protein surface loop regions (>10 away) are observed to be identical across species, and networks of conserved interactions/residues connect these highly flexible surface regions to the active-site residues that make direct contact with substrates. More interestingly, examination of reaction-coupled motions in non-homologous enzyme systems (with no structural or sequence similarity) that catalyze the same biochemical reaction shows motions that induce remarkably similar changes in the enzyme substrate interactions during catalysis. The results indicate that the reaction-coupled flexibility is a conserved aspect of the enzyme molecular architecture. Protein motions in distal areas of homologous and non-homologous enzyme systems mediate similar changes in the active-site enzyme substrate interactions, thereby impacting

  14. Energy conservation in quantum mechanics

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Prentis, Jeffrey J.; Fedak, William A.

    2004-05-01

    In the classical mechanics of conservative systems, the position and momentum evolve deterministically such that the sum of the kinetic energy and potential energy remains constant in time. This canonical trademark of energy conservation is absent in the standard presentations of quantum mechanics based on the Schrödinger picture. We present a purely canonical proof of energy conservation that focuses exclusively on the time-dependent position x(t) and momentum p(t) operators. This treatment of energy conservation serves as an introduction to the Heisenberg picture and illuminates the classical-quantum connection. We derive a quantum-mechanical work-energy theorem and show explicitly how the time dependence of x and p and the noncommutivity of x and p conspire to bring about a perfect temporal balance between the evolving kinetic and potential parts of the total energy operator.

  15. Conservation and diversity among the three-dimensional folds of the Dicistroviridae intergenic region IRESes.

    PubMed

    Pfingsten, Jennifer S; Costantino, David A; Kieft, Jeffrey S

    2007-07-27

    Internal ribosome entry site (IRES) RNAs are necessary for successful infection of many pathogenic viruses, but the details of the RNA structure-based mechanism used to bind and manipulate the ribosome remain poorly understood. The IRES RNAs from the Dicistroviridae intergenic region (IGR) are an excellent model system to understand the fundamental tenets of IRES function, requiring no protein factors to manipulate the ribosome and initiate translation. Here, we explore the architecture of four members of the IGR IRESes, representative of the two divergent classes of these IRES RNAs. Using biochemical and structural probing methods, we show that despite sequence variability they contain a common three-dimensional fold. The three-dimensional architecture of the ribosome binding domain from these IRESes is organized around a core helical scaffold, around which the rest of the RNA molecule folds. However, subtle variation in the folds of these IRESes and the presence of an additional secondary structure element suggest differences in the details of their manipulation of the large ribosomal subunit. Overall, the results demonstrate how a conserved three-dimensional RNA fold governs ribosome binding and manipulation. PMID:17544444

  16. Structural Conservation of the Myoviridae Phage Tail Sheath Protein Fold

    SciTech Connect

    Aksyuk, Anastasia A.; Kurochkina, Lidia P.; Fokine, Andrei; Forouhar, Farhad; Mesyanzhinov, Vadim V.; Tong, Liang; Rossmann, Michael G.

    2012-02-21

    Bacteriophage phiKZ is a giant phage that infects Pseudomonas aeruginosa, a human pathogen. The phiKZ virion consists of a 1450 {angstrom} diameter icosahedral head and a 2000 {angstrom}-long contractile tail. The structure of the whole virus was previously reported, showing that its tail organization in the extended state is similar to the well-studied Myovirus bacteriophage T4 tail. The crystal structure of a tail sheath protein fragment of phiKZ was determined to 2.4 {angstrom} resolution. Furthermore, crystal structures of two prophage tail sheath proteins were determined to 1.9 and 3.3 {angstrom} resolution. Despite low sequence identity between these proteins, all of these structures have a similar fold. The crystal structure of the phiKZ tail sheath protein has been fitted into cryo-electron-microscopy reconstructions of the extended tail sheath and of a polysheath. The structural rearrangement of the phiKZ tail sheath contraction was found to be similar to that of phage T4.

  17. Fold of the conserved DTC domain in deltex proteins

    SciTech Connect

    Obiero, Josiah; Walker, John R.; Dhe-Paganon, Sirano

    2012-04-30

    Human Deltex 3-like (DTX3L) is a member of the Deltex family of proteins. Initially identified as a B-lymphoma and BAL-associated protein, DTX3L is an E3 ligase that regulates subcellular localization of its partner protein, BAL, by a dynamic nucleocytoplasmic trafficking mechanism. Unlike other members of the Deltex family of proteins, DTX3L lacks the highly basic N-terminal motif and the central proline-rich motif present in other Deltex proteins, and instead contains other unique N-terminal domains. The C-terminal domains are, however, homologous with other members of the Deltex family of proteins; these include a RING domain and a previously unidentified C-terminal domain. In this study, we report the high-resolution crystal structure of this previously uncharacterized C-terminal domain of human DTX3L, which we term the Deltex C-terminal domain.

  18. The X-38 V-201 Fin Fold Actuation Mechanism

    NASA Technical Reports Server (NTRS)

    Lupo, Christian; Robertson, Brandan; Gafka, George

    2004-01-01

    The X-38 Vehicle 201 (V-201) is a space flight prototype lifting body vehicle that was designed to launch to orbit in the Space Shuttle orbiter payload bay. Although the project was cancelled in May 2003, many of the systems were nearly complete. This paper will describe the fin folding actuation mechanism flight subsystems and development units as well as lessons learned in the design, assembly, development testing, and qualification testing. The two vertical tail fins must be stowed (folded inboard) to allow the orbiter payload bay doors to close. The fin folding actuation mechanism is a remotely or extravehicular activity (EVA) actuated single fault tolerant system consisting of seven subsystems capable of repeatedly deploying or stowing the fins.

  19. Structural proteomics of minimal organisms: conservation ofprotein fold usage and evolutionary implications

    SciTech Connect

    Chandonia, John-Marc; Kim, Sung-Hou

    2006-03-15

    Background: Determining the complete repertoire of proteinstructures for all soluble, globular proteins in a single organism hasbeen one of the major goals of several structural genomics projects inrecent years. Results: We report that this goal has nearly been reachedfor several "minimal organisms"--parasites or symbionts with reducedgenomes--for which over 95 percent of the soluble, globular proteins maynow be assigned folds, overall 3-D backbone structures. We analyze thestructures of these proteins as they relate to cellular functions, andcompare conservation off old usage between functional categories. We alsocompare patterns in the conservation off olds among minimal organisms andthose observed between minimal organisms and other bacteria. Conclusion:We find that proteins performing essential cellular functions closelyrelated to transcription and translation exhibit a higher degree ofconservation in fold usage than proteins in other functional categories.Folds related to transcription and translation functional categories werealso over represented in minimal organisms compared to otherbacteria.

  20. Mechanics, Structure and Dynamics of Metaphase Chromosome Folding

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Marko, John F.

    2014-03-01

    During cell division, eukaryote chromosomes are restructured from a relatively dispersed interphase form, into a relatively compact folded metaphase form. I will discuss experiments aimed at analyzing the folding scheme of metaphase chromosomes, where mechanical response and biochemical perturbation are used as tools for diagnosing structure. Experiments with nucleases reveal that the continuity of the metaphase chromosome depends on DNA, i.e., that the metaphase chromosome can be considered to be a ``chromatin gel.'' Experiments with topoisomerases indicate that chromatin entanglements play an appreciable role in determining chromosome mechanical properties, suggesting that they may play a structural role. We further show that perturbation of condensin complexes dramatically changes metaphase chromosome mechanics. Finally we report results of fluorescence visualization of distributions of condensin I and II along metaphase chromosomes. Supported by NSF Grants MCB-1022117 and DMR-1206868, and by NIH Grants 1U54CA143869-01, 1U54HD076188 and 1R01GM105847-01.

  1. Statistical mechanics of simple models of protein folding and design.

    PubMed Central

    Pande, V S; Grosberg, A Y; Tanaka, T

    1997-01-01

    It is now believed that the primary equilibrium aspects of simple models of protein folding are understood theoretically. However, current theories often resort to rather heavy mathematics to overcome some technical difficulties inherent in the problem or start from a phenomenological model. To this end, we take a new approach in this pedagogical review of the statistical mechanics of protein folding. The benefit of our approach is a drastic mathematical simplification of the theory, without resort to any new approximations or phenomenological prescriptions. Indeed, the results we obtain agree precisely with previous calculations. Because of this simplification, we are able to present here a thorough and self contained treatment of the problem. Topics discussed include the statistical mechanics of the random energy model (REM), tests of the validity of REM as a model for heteropolymer freezing, freezing transition of random sequences, phase diagram of designed ("minimally frustrated") sequences, and the degree to which errors in the interactions employed in simulations of either folding and design can still lead to correct folding behavior. Images FIGURE 2 FIGURE 3 FIGURE 4 FIGURE 6 PMID:9414231

  2. Insights into Coupled Folding and Binding Mechanisms from Kinetic Studies.

    PubMed

    Shammas, Sarah L; Crabtree, Michael D; Dahal, Liza; Wicky, Basile I M; Clarke, Jane

    2016-03-25

    Intrinsically disordered proteins (IDPs) are characterized by a lack of persistent structure. Since their identification more than a decade ago, many questions regarding their functional relevance and interaction mechanisms remain unanswered. Although most experiments have taken equilibrium and structural perspectives, fewer studies have investigated the kinetics of their interactions. Here we review and highlight the type of information that can be gained from kinetic studies. In particular, we show how kinetic studies of coupled folding and binding reactions, an important class of signaling event, are needed to determine mechanisms. PMID:26851275

  3. Folding with thermal-mechanical feedback: A reply

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Hobbs, Bruce E.; Regenauer-Lieb, Klaus; Ord, Alison

    2009-07-01

    A unified theory of deformation at all scales is outlined. Processes operating during deformation and metamorphism can be coupled in the form of reaction-diffusion equations. Solutions to these equations depend on the specific processes that dominate the dissipation of energy. Hobbs et al. (2008) is concerned with a scale where deformation and conduction of heat dominate and this corresponds to the regional scale. Other papers present results for other length and time scales. Boudinage develops through these processes in materials where the strict Biot theory predicts no boudinage. The strict Biot theory is applicable only at the instant of instability and provides no information on the subsequent growth of the folds. Analytical results for growth to large amplitudes show that only one wavelength develops and not a spectrum of wavelengths as proposed by Treagus and Hudleston (in press) and others. The wavelength to thickness ratio that finally develops is strongly dependent on boundary conditions and so such ratios tell us nothing about the conditions of folding unless these boundary conditions are known. The processes involved in folding with thermal-mechanical feedback are identical for single- and multi-layer systems so that it requires little space to expand the discussion to multi-layers.

  4. Conserved aromatic residues as determinants in the folding and assembly of immunoglobulin variable domains.

    PubMed

    Campion, Stephen R

    2016-02-01

    Detailed analysis of amino acid distribution, focusing on the "framework" regions of both heavy- and light-chain variable immunoglobulin (Ig) domains, distinguished those conserved sequence elements shared by both heavy-chain (VH) and light-chain (VL) domains from those conserved determinants unique to either VH or VL domains alone. Mapping of conserved chemical functionality onto characterized PDB structures showed the analogous placement and utilization of shared determinants in VH and VL structures that are generally similar. Identical Arginine-Aspartic acid ion-pairs located symmetrically on the lateral surfaces of VH and VL domains, respectively, as well as paired glutamine residues that constitute a central contact site between VH and VL domains represent clearly shared molecular features. Three sites of shared aromaticity were found localized to symmetrical sites lining the inaccessible interface of the VH-VL duplex, suggesting an expanded role for strategically conserved aromatic residues from a postulated determinant of individual Ig domain folding to now implicate conserved aromatic sites in the subsequent multi-subunit assembly of native antibody superstructure. Differential domain-specific conservation, representing evolutionary diversification and molecular asymmetry between heavy- and light-chain variable domains was limited, but included amino acids from each functional class and must be evaluated with regard to their possible involvement in heterologous aspects of IgV protein structure-function. PMID:26742085

  5. Role of mechanical factors in cortical folding development

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Razavi, Mir Jalil; Zhang, Tuo; Li, Xiao; Liu, Tianming; Wang, Xianqiao

    2015-09-01

    Deciphering mysteries of the structure-function relationship in cortical folding has emerged as the cynosure of recent research on brain. Understanding the mechanism of convolution patterns can provide useful insight into the normal and pathological brain function. However, despite decades of speculation and endeavors the underlying mechanism of the brain folding process remains poorly understood. This paper focuses on the three-dimensional morphological patterns of a developing brain under different tissue specification assumptions via theoretical analyses, computational modeling, and experiment verifications. The living human brain is modeled with a soft structure having outer cortex and inner core to investigate the brain development. Analytical interpretations of differential growth of the brain model provide preliminary insight into the critical growth ratio for instability and crease formation of the developing brain followed by computational modeling as a way to offer clues for brain's postbuckling morphology. Especially, tissue geometry, growth ratio, and material properties of the cortex are explored as the most determinant parameters to control the morphogenesis of a growing brain model. As indicated in results, compressive residual stresses caused by the sufficient growth trigger instability and the brain forms highly convoluted patterns wherein its gyrification degree is specified with the cortex thickness. Morphological patterns of the developing brain predicted from the computational modeling are consistent with our neuroimaging observations, thereby clarifying, in part, the reason of some classical malformation in a developing brain.

  6. Electrostatic mechanism of nucleosomal array folding revealed by computer simulation

    PubMed Central

    Sun, Jian; Zhang, Qing; Schlick, Tamar

    2005-01-01

    Although numerous experiments indicate that the chromatin fiber displays salt-dependent conformations, the associated molecular mechanism remains unclear. Here, we apply an irregular Discrete Surface Charge Optimization (DiSCO) model of the nucleosome with all histone tails incorporated to describe by Monte Carlo simulations salt-dependent rearrangements of a nucleosomal array with 12 nucleosomes. The ensemble of nucleosomal array conformations display salt-dependent condensation in good agreement with hydrodynamic measurements and suggest that the array adopts highly irregular 3D zig-zag conformations at high (physiological) salt concentrations and transitions into the extended “beads-on-a-string” conformation at low salt. Energy analyses indicate that the repulsion among linker DNA leads to this extended form, whereas internucleosome attraction drives the folding at high salt. The balance between these two contributions determines the salt-dependent condensation. Importantly, the internucleosome and linker DNA–nucleosome attractions require histone tails; we find that the H3 tails, in particular, are crucial for stabilizing the moderately folded fiber at physiological monovalent salt. PMID:15919827

  7. Explorations of linked editosome domains leading to the discovery of motifs defining conserved pockets in editosome OB-folds

    PubMed Central

    Park, Young-Jun; Hol, Wim G. J.

    2012-01-01

    Trypanosomatids form a group of protozoa which contain parasites of human, animals and plants. Several of these species cause major human diseases, including Trypanosoma brucei which is the causative agent of human African trypanosomiasis, also called sleeping sickness. These organisms have many highly unusual features including a unique U-insertion/deletion RNA editing process in the single mitochondrion. A key multi-protein complex, called the ~20S editosome, or editosome, carries out a cascade of essential RNA-modifying reactions and contains a core of 12 different proteins of which six are the interaction proteins A1 to A6. Each of these interaction proteins comprises a C-terminal OB-fold and the smallest interaction protein A6 has been shown to interact with four other editosome OB-folds. Here we report the results of a “linked OB-fold” approach to obtain a view of how multiple OB-folds might interact in the core of the editosome. Constructs of multiple variants of linked domains in 25 expression and co-expression experiments resulted in 13 soluble multi-OB-fold complexes. In several instances, these complexes were more homogeneous in size than those obtained from corresponding unlinked OB-folds. The crystal structure of A3OB linked to A6 could be elucidated and confirmed the tight interaction between these two OB domains as seen also in our recent complex of A3OB and A6 with nanobodies. In the current crystal structure of A3OB linked to A6, hydrophobic side chains reside in well-defined pockets of neighboring OB-fold domains. When analyzing the available crystal structures of editosome OB-folds, it appears that in five instances “Pocket 1” of A1OB, A3OB and A6 is occupied by a hydrophobic side chain from a neighboring protein. In these three different OB-folds, Pocket 1 is formed by two conserved sequence motifs and an invariant arginine. These pockets might play a key role in the assembly or mechanism of the editosome by interacting with hydrophobic

  8. The highly conserved domain of unknown function 1792 has a distinct glycosyltransferase fold

    PubMed Central

    Zhang, Hua; Zhu, Fan; Yang, Tiandi; Ding, Lei; Zhou, Meixian; Li, Jingzhi; Haslam, Stuart M; Dell, Anne; Erlandsen, Heidi; Wu, Hui

    2014-01-01

    More than 33,000 glycosyltransferases have been identified. Structural studies, however, have only revealed two distinct glycosyltransferase (GT) folds, GT-A and GT-B. Here we report a 1.34 Å resolution X-ray crystallographic structure of a previously uncharacterized “domain of unknown function” 1792 (DUF1792) and show that the domain adopts a new fold and is required for glycosylation of a family of serine-rich repeat streptococcal adhesins. Biochemical studies reveal that the domain is a glucosyltransferase, and it catalyzes the transfer of glucose to the branch point of the hexasaccharide O-linked to the serine-rich repeat of the bacterial adhesin, Fap1 of Streptococcus parasanguinis. DUF1792 homologs from both Gram-positive and Gram-negative bacteria also exhibit the activity. Thus DUF1792 represents a new family of glycosyltransferases, so we designate it as a GT-D glycosyltransferase fold. As the domain is highly conserved in bacteria and not found in eukaryotes, it can be explored as a new antibacterial target. PMID:25023666

  9. Conservation of Fold and Topology of Functional Elements in Thiamin Pyrophosphate Enzymes

    NASA Technical Reports Server (NTRS)

    Dominiak, P.; Ciszak, E. M.

    2005-01-01

    Thiamin pyrophosphate (TPP)-dependent enzymes are a highly divergent family of proteins binding both TPP and metal ions. They perform decarboxylation-hydroxyaldehydes. Prior -ketoacids and of a common - (O=)C-C(OH)- fragment of to knowledge of three-dimensional structures of these enzmes, the GDGY25-30NN sequence was used to identify these enzymes. Subsequently, a number of structural studies on those enzymes revealed multi-subunit organization and the features of the two duplicate cofactor binding sites. Analyzing the structures of 44 structurally known enzymes, we found that the common structure of these enzymes is reduced to 180-220 amino acid long fragments of two PP and two PYR domains that form the [PP:PYR]2 binding center of two cofactor molecules. The structures of PP and PYR are arranged in a similar fold-sheet with triplets of helices on both sides.Dconsisting of a six-stranded Residues surrounding the cofactors are not strictly conserved, but they provide the same interatomic contacts required for the catalytic functions that these enzymes perform while maintaining interactive structural integrity. These structural and functional amino acids are topological counterparts located in the same positions of the conserved fold of sets of PP and PYR domains. Additional parallels include short fragments of sequences that link these amino acids to the fold and function. This report on the structural commonalities amongst TPP dependent enzymes is thought to contribute new approaches to annotation that may assist in advancing the functional proteomics of TPP dependent enzymes, and trace their complexity within evolutionary context.

  10. Ring Separation Highlights the Protein-Folding Mechanism Used by the Phage EL-Encoded Chaperonin.

    PubMed

    Molugu, Sudheer K; Hildenbrand, Zacariah L; Morgan, David Gene; Sherman, Michael B; He, Lilin; Georgopoulos, Costa; Sernova, Natalia V; Kurochkina, Lidia P; Mesyanzhinov, Vadim V; Miroshnikov, Konstantin A; Bernal, Ricardo A

    2016-04-01

    Chaperonins are ubiquitous, ATP-dependent protein-folding molecular machines that are essential for all forms of life. Bacteriophage φEL encodes its own chaperonin to presumably fold exceedingly large viral proteins via profoundly different nucleotide-binding conformations. Our structural investigations indicate that ATP likely binds to both rings simultaneously and that a misfolded substrate acts as the trigger for ATP hydrolysis. More importantly, the φEL complex dissociates into two single rings resulting from an evolutionarily altered residue in the highly conserved ATP-binding pocket. Conformational changes also more than double the volume of the single-ring internal chamber such that larger viral proteins are accommodated. This is illustrated by the fact that φEL is capable of folding β-galactosidase, a 116-kDa protein. Collectively, the architecture and protein-folding mechanism of the φEL chaperonin are significantly different from those observed in group I and II chaperonins. PMID:26996960

  11. Pertactin β-helix folding mechanism suggests common themes for the secretion and folding of autotransporter proteins

    PubMed Central

    Junker, Mirco; Schuster, Christopher C.; McDonnell, Andrew V.; Sorg, Kelli A.; Finn, Mary C.; Berger, Bonnie; Clark, Patricia L.

    2006-01-01

    Many virulence factors secreted from pathogenic Gram-negative bacteria are autotransporter proteins. The final step of autotransporter secretion is C → N-terminal threading of the passenger domain through the outer membrane (OM), mediated by a cotranslated C-terminal porin domain. The native structure is formed only after this final secretion step, which requires neither ATP nor a proton gradient. Sequence analysis reveals that, despite size, sequence, and functional diversity among autotransporter passenger domains, >97% are predicted to form parallel β-helices, indicating this structural topology may be important for secretion. We report the folding behavior of pertactin, an autotransporter passenger domain from Bordetella pertussis. The pertactin β-helix folds reversibly in isolation, but folding is much slower than expected based on size and native-state topology. Surprisingly, pertactin is not prone to aggregation during folding, even though folding is extremely slow. Interestingly, equilibrium denaturation results in the formation of a partially folded structure, a stable core comprising the C-terminal half of the protein. Examination of the pertactin crystal structure does not reveal any obvious reason for the enhanced stability of the C terminus. In vivo, slow folding would prevent premature folding of the passenger domain in the periplasm, before OM secretion. Moreover, the extra stability of the C-terminal rungs of the β-helix might serve as a template for the formation of native protein during OM secretion; hence, vectorial folding of the β-helix could contribute to the energy-independent translocation mechanism. Coupled with the sequence analysis, the results presented here suggest a general mechanism for autotransporter secretion. PMID:16549796

  12. Mass Conservation Implications of a Reaction Mechanism

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Smith, William R.; Missen, Ronald W.

    2003-07-01

    A proposed reaction mechanism in chemical kinetics contains implications for mass-conservation equations (stoichiometry) governing the reacting system. The only information required to determine the number and a particular set of these equations is the stoichiometric matrix of the mechanism, N. The mechanism should first be tested to determine that it is conservative: that it is in accordance with a closed-system assumption. The general criterion is given and a simple version is provided when the formula matrix of the species, A, is also known. For a conservative system, a procedure is given to show how the interactive Java applet JSTOICH can be used to determine the number and a set of mass-conservation equations implied by N (A need not be known). Similarly, if A is known, JSTOICH can be used to determine the number of special stoichiometric restrictions, r. If r = 0, the set of independent element-conservation equations provide the required equations; if r > 0, the set of equations generated by JSTOICH must be used. Examples are given to illustrate the various procedures.

  13. When fast is better: protein folding fundamentals and mechanisms from ultrafast approaches

    PubMed Central

    Muñoz, Victor; Cerminara, Michele

    2016-01-01

    Protein folding research stalled for decades because conventional experiments indicated that proteins fold slowly and in single strokes, whereas theory predicted a complex interplay between dynamics and energetics resulting in myriad microscopic pathways. Ultrafast kinetic methods turned the field upside down by providing the means to probe fundamental aspects of folding, test theoretical predictions and benchmark simulations. Accordingly, experimentalists could measure the timescales for all relevant folding motions, determine the folding speed limit and confirm that folding barriers are entropic bottlenecks. Moreover, a catalogue of proteins that fold extremely fast (microseconds) could be identified. Such fast-folding proteins cross shallow free energy barriers or fold downhill, and thus unfold with minimal co-operativity (gradually). A new generation of thermodynamic methods has exploited this property to map folding landscapes, interaction networks and mechanisms at nearly atomic resolution. In parallel, modern molecular dynamics simulations have finally reached the timescales required to watch fast-folding proteins fold and unfold in silico. All of these findings have buttressed the fundamentals of protein folding predicted by theory, and are now offering the first glimpses at the underlying mechanisms. Fast folding appears to also have functional implications as recent results connect downhill folding with intrinsically disordered proteins, their complex binding modes and ability to moonlight. These connections suggest that the coupling between downhill (un)folding and binding enables such protein domains to operate analogically as conformational rheostats. PMID:27574021

  14. When fast is better: protein folding fundamentals and mechanisms from ultrafast approaches.

    PubMed

    Muñoz, Victor; Cerminara, Michele

    2016-09-01

    Protein folding research stalled for decades because conventional experiments indicated that proteins fold slowly and in single strokes, whereas theory predicted a complex interplay between dynamics and energetics resulting in myriad microscopic pathways. Ultrafast kinetic methods turned the field upside down by providing the means to probe fundamental aspects of folding, test theoretical predictions and benchmark simulations. Accordingly, experimentalists could measure the timescales for all relevant folding motions, determine the folding speed limit and confirm that folding barriers are entropic bottlenecks. Moreover, a catalogue of proteins that fold extremely fast (microseconds) could be identified. Such fast-folding proteins cross shallow free energy barriers or fold downhill, and thus unfold with minimal co-operativity (gradually). A new generation of thermodynamic methods has exploited this property to map folding landscapes, interaction networks and mechanisms at nearly atomic resolution. In parallel, modern molecular dynamics simulations have finally reached the timescales required to watch fast-folding proteins fold and unfold in silico All of these findings have buttressed the fundamentals of protein folding predicted by theory, and are now offering the first glimpses at the underlying mechanisms. Fast folding appears to also have functional implications as recent results connect downhill folding with intrinsically disordered proteins, their complex binding modes and ability to moonlight. These connections suggest that the coupling between downhill (un)folding and binding enables such protein domains to operate analogically as conformational rheostats. PMID:27574021

  15. Mechanisms of integral membrane protein insertion and folding

    PubMed Central

    2014-01-01

    The biogenesis, folding, and structure of α-helical membrane proteins (MPs) are important to understand because they underlie virtually all physiological processes in cells including key metabolic pathways, such as the respiratory chain and the photosystems, and the transport of solutes and signals across membranes. Nearly all MPs require translocons—often referred to as protein-conducting channels—for proper insertion into their target membrane. Remarkable progress toward understanding the structure and functioning of translocons has been made during the past decade. Here we review and assess this progress critically. All available evidence indicates that MPs are equilibrium structures that achieve their final structural states by folding along thermodynamically controlled pathways. The main challenge for cells is the targeting and membrane insertion of highly hydrophobic amino acid sequences. Targeting and insertion are managed in cells principally by interactions between ribosomes and membrane-embedded translocons. Our review examines the biophysical and biological boundaries of membrane protein insertion and the folding of polytopic membrane proteins in vivo. A theme of the review is the under-appreciated role of basic thermodynamic principles in MP folding and assembly. Thermodynamics not only dictates the final folded structure, it is the driving force for the evolution of the ribosome-translocon system of assembly. We conclude the review with a perspective suggesting a new view of translocon-guided MP insertion. PMID:25277655

  16. Evolution Rescues Folding of Human Immunodeficiency Virus-1 Envelope Glycoprotein GP120 Lacking a Conserved Disulfide Bond

    PubMed Central

    Hsu, Shang-Te D.; van Anken, Eelco; Liscaljet, I. Marije; Dankers, Martijn; Bontjer, Ilja; Land, Aafke; Braakman, Ineke; Bonvin, Alexandre M.J.J.; Berkhout, Ben

    2008-01-01

    The majority of eukaryotic secretory and membrane proteins contain disulfide bonds, which are strongly conserved within protein families because of their crucial role in folding or function. The exact role of these disulfide bonds during folding is unclear. Using virus-driven evolution we generated a viral glycoprotein variant, which is functional despite the lack of an absolutely conserved disulfide bond that links two antiparallel β-strands in a six-stranded β-barrel. Molecular dynamics simulations revealed that improved hydrogen bonding and side chain packing led to stabilization of the β-barrel fold, implying that β-sheet preference codirects glycoprotein folding in vivo. Our results show that the interactions between two β-strands that are important for the formation and/or integrity of the β-barrel can be supported by either a disulfide bond or β-sheet favoring residues. PMID:18753405

  17. Mechanical Modeling and Computer Simulation of Protein Folding

    ERIC Educational Resources Information Center

    Prigozhin, Maxim B.; Scott, Gregory E.; Denos, Sharlene

    2014-01-01

    In this activity, science education and modern technology are bridged to teach students at the high school and undergraduate levels about protein folding and to strengthen their model building skills. Students are guided from a textbook picture of a protein as a rigid crystal structure to a more realistic view: proteins are highly dynamic…

  18. Identification of an Ideal-like Fingerprint for a Protein Fold using Overlapped Conserved Residues based Approach

    PubMed Central

    Goyal, Amit; Sokalingam, Sriram; Hwang, Kyu-Suk; Lee, Sun-Gu

    2014-01-01

    Design of an efficient fingerprint that detects homologous proteins at distant sequence identity has been a great challenge. This paper proposes a strategy to extract an ideal-like fingerprint with high specificity and sensitivity from a group of sequences related to a fold. The approach is devised based on the assumptions that the critical residues for a protein fold may be conserved in three aspects, i.e. sequence, structure, and intramolecular interaction, and embedded in secondary structures. We hypothesized that the residues satisfying such conditions simultaneously may work as an efficient fingerprint. This idea was tested on protein folds of various classes, such as beta-strand rich, alpha + beta proteins and alpha/beta proteins with discrete sequence similarities. The fingerprint for each fold was generated by selecting the overlapped conserved residues (OCR) from the conserved residues obtained using independent three alignment methods, i.e. multiple sequence alignment, structure-based alignment, and alignment based on the interstrand hydrogen-bonds. The OCR fingerprints showed more than 90% detection efficiency for all the folds tested and were identified to be almost the minimal fingerprints composed of only critical residues. This study is expected to provide an important conceptual improvement in the identification or design of ideal fingerprints for a protein fold. PMID:25008052

  19. Fold conservation and proteolysis in zebrafish IRBP structure: Clues to possible enzymatic function?

    PubMed

    Ghosh, Debashis; Haswell, Karen M; Sprada, Molly; Gonzalez-Fernandez, Federico

    2016-06-01

    Multiple functions for Interphotoreceptor Retinoid-Binding Protein (IRBP) may explain its localization in the retina, vitreous and pineal gland and association with retinitis pigmentosa and myopia. We have been engaged in uncovering the structure-function relationships of this interesting protein long thought to bind visual-cycle retinoids and fatty acids in the subretinal space. Although hydrophobic domains capable of binding such ligands have now been found, we ask what other structural domains might be present that could predict new functions? Interestingly, IRBP possesses a fold similar to C-terminal processing proteases (CTPases) but is missing the PDZ domain. Here we present structural evidence that this fold may have a role in a recently observed autoproteolytic activity of the two-module zebrafish (z) IRBP (Ghosh et al. Exp. Eye Res., 2015). When the structure of Scenedesmus obliquus D1 CTPase (D1P) is superimposed with the first module of zIRBP (z1), the PDZ domain of D1P occupies roughly the same position in the amino acid sequence as the inter-domain tether in z1, between residues P71 and P85. The catalytic triad K397, S372 and E375 of D1P is located at the inter-domain interfacial cleft, similarly as the tetrad K241, S243, D177 and T179 of z1 residues, presumed to have proteolytic function. Packing of two adjacent symmetry-related molecules within the z1 crystal show that the helix α8 penetrates the interfacial cleft underneath the inter-domain tether, forming a simple intermolecular "knot". The full-length zIRBP is cleaved at or immediately after T309, which is located at the end of α8 and is the ninth residue of the second module z2. We propose that the helix α8 within intact zIRBP bends at P301, away from the improbable knotted fold, and positions the cleavage site T309 near the putative catalytic tetrad of the neighboring zIRBP to be proteolytically cleaved. The conservation of this functional catalytic domain suggests that possible

  20. Quantification of tertiary structural conservation despite primary sequence drift in the globin fold.

    PubMed

    Aronson, H E; Royer, W E; Hendrickson, W A

    1994-10-01

    The globin family of protein structures was the first for which it was recognized that tertiary structure can be highly conserved even when primary sequences have diverged to a virtually undetectable level of similarity. This principle of structural inertia in molecular evolution is now evident for many other protein families. We have performed a systematic comparison of the sequences and structures of 6 representative hemoglobin subunits as diverse in origin as plants, clams, and humans. Our analysis is based on a 97-residue helical core in common to all 6 structures. Amino acid sequence identities range from 12.4% to 42.3% in pairwise comparisons, and, despite these variations, the maximal RMS deviation in alpha-carbon positions is 3.02 A. Overall, sequence similarity and structural deviation are significantly anticorrelated, with a correlation coefficient of -0.71, but for a set of structures having under 20% pairwise identity, this anticorrelation falls to -0.38, which emphasizes the weak connection between a specific sequence and the tertiary fold. There is substantial variability in structure outside the helical core, and functional characteristics of these globins also differ appreciably. Nevertheless, despite variations in detail that the sequence dissimilarities and functional differences imply, the core structures of these globins remain remarkably preserved. PMID:7849587

  1. Evolution of ribonuclease in relation to polypeptide folding mechanisms.

    NASA Technical Reports Server (NTRS)

    Barnard, E. A.; Cohen, M. S.; Gold, M. H.; Kim, J.-K.

    1972-01-01

    Comparisons of the N-terminal region of pancreatic RNAase in seven species are presented, taking into account cow, bison, deer, rat, pig, kangaroo, and turtle. The available limited evidence on hypervariable regions indicates that there is still an evolutionary constraint on them. It is proposed that there is a selection pressure acting on all regions of a protein sequence in evolution. Mutations that tend to obstruct the folding process can lead to various intensities of selection pressure.

  2. Mechanisms of Oxidative Protein Folding in the Bacterial Cell Envelope

    PubMed Central

    2010-01-01

    Abstract Disulfide-bond formation is important for the correct folding of a great number of proteins that are exported to the cell envelope of bacteria. Bacterial cells have evolved elaborate systems to promote the joining of two cysteines to form a disulfide bond and to repair misoxidized proteins. In the past two decades, significant advances have occurred in our understanding of the enzyme systems (DsbA, DsbB, DsbC, DsbG, and DsbD) used by the gram-negative bacterium Escherichia coli to ensure that correct pairs of cysteines are joined during the process of protein folding. However, a number of fundamental questions about these processes remain, especially about how they occur inside the cell. In addition, recent recognition of the increasing diversity among bacteria in the disulfide bond–forming capacity and in the systems for introducing disulfide bonds into proteins is raising new questions. We review here the marked progress in this field and discuss important questions that remain for future studies. Antioxid. Redox Signal. 13, 1231–1246. PMID:20367276

  3. Critical taper wedge mechanics of fold-and-thrust belts on Venus - Initial results from Magellan

    NASA Technical Reports Server (NTRS)

    Suppe, John; Connors, Chris

    1992-01-01

    Examples of fold-and-thrust belts from a variety of tectonic settings on Venus are introduced. Predictions for the mechanics of fold-and-thrust belts on Venus are examined on the basis of wedge theory, rock mechanics data, and currently known conditions on Venus. The theoretical predictions are then compared with new Magellan data.

  4. Autotransporters: The Cellular Environment Reshapes a Folding Mechanism to Promote Protein Transport

    PubMed Central

    Braselmann, Esther; Clark, Patricia L.

    2012-01-01

    We know very little about how the cellular environment affects protein folding mechanisms. Here, we focus on one unique aspect of that environment that is difficult to recapitulate in the test tube: the effect of a folding vector. When protein folding is initiated at one end of the polypeptide chain, folding starts from a much smaller ensemble of conformations than during refolding of a full-length polypeptide chain. But to what extent can vectorial folding affect protein folding kinetics and the conformations of folding intermediates? We focus on recent studies of autotransporter proteins, the largest class of virulence proteins from pathogenic Gram-negative bacteria. Autotransporter proteins are secreted across the bacterial inner membrane from N→C-terminus, which, like refolding in vitro, retards folding. But in contrast, upon C→N-terminal secretion across the outer membrane autotransporter folding proceeds orders of magnitude faster. The potential impact of vectorial folding on the folding mechanisms of other proteins is also discussed. PMID:23687560

  5. Connecting thermal and mechanical protein (un)folding landscapes.

    PubMed

    Sun, Li; Noel, Jeffrey K; Sulkowska, Joanna I; Levine, Herbert; Onuchic, José N

    2014-12-16

    Molecular dynamics simulations supplement single-molecule pulling experiments by providing the possibility of examining the full free energy landscape using many coordinates. Here, we use an all-atom structure-based model to study the force and temperature dependence of the unfolding of the protein filamin by applying force at both termini. The unfolding time-force relation τ(F) indicates that the force-induced unfolding behavior of filamin can be characterized into three regimes: barrier-limited low- and intermediate-force regimes, and a barrierless high-force regime. Slope changes of τ(F) separate the three regimes. We show that the behavior of τ(F) can be understood from a two-dimensional free energy landscape projected onto the extension X and the fraction of native contacts Q. In the low-force regime, the unfolding rate is roughly force-independent due to the small (even negative) separation in X between the native ensemble and transition state ensemble (TSE). In the intermediate-force regime, force sufficiently separates the TSE from the native ensemble such that τ(F) roughly follows an exponential relation. This regime is typically explored by pulling experiments. While X may fail to resolve the TSE due to overlap with the unfolded ensemble just below the folding temperature, the overlap is minimal at lower temperatures where experiments are likely to be conducted. The TSE becomes increasingly structured with force, whereas the average order of structural events during unfolding remains roughly unchanged. The high-force regime is characterized by barrierless unfolding, and the unfolding time approaches a limit of ∼10 μs for the highest forces we studied. Finally, a combination of X and Q is shown to be a good reaction coordinate for almost the entire force range. PMID:25517160

  6. Translation Initiation is Controlled by RNA Folding Kinetics via a Ribosome Drafting Mechanism.

    PubMed

    Espah Borujeni, Amin; Salis, Howard M

    2016-06-01

    RNA folding plays an important role in controlling protein synthesis as well as other cellular processes. Existing models have focused on how RNA folding energetics control translation initiation rate under equilibrium conditions but have largely ignored the effects of nonequilibrium RNA folding. We introduce a new mechanism, called "ribosome drafting", that explains how a mRNA's folding kinetics and the ribosome's binding rate collectively control its translation initiation rate. During cycles of translation, ribosome drafting emerges whenever successive ribosomes bind to a mRNA faster than the mRNA can refold, maintaining it in a nonequilibrium state with an acceleration of protein synthesis. Using computational design, time-correlated single photon counting, and expression measurements, we demonstrate that slow-folding and fast-folding RNA structures with equivalent folding energetics can vary protein synthesis rates by 1000-fold. We determine the necessary conditions for ribosome drafting by characterizing mRNAs with rationally designed ribosome binding rates, folding kinetics, and folding energetics, confirming the predictions of a nonequilibrium Markov model of translation. Our results have widespread implications, illustrating how competitive folding and assembly kinetics can shape the gene expression machinery's sequence-structure-function relationship inside cells. PMID:27199273

  7. A Two-step Mechanism for the Folding of Actin by the Yeast Cytosolic Chaperonin

    PubMed Central

    Stuart, Sarah F.; Leatherbarrow, Robin J.; Willison, Keith R.

    2011-01-01

    Actin requires the chaperonin containing TCP1 (CCT), a hexadecameric ATPase essential for cell viability in eukaryotes, to fold to its native state. Following binding of unfolded actin to CCT, the cavity of the chaperone closes and actin is folded and released in an ATP-dependent folding cycle. In yeast, CCT forms a ternary complex with the phosducin-like protein PLP2p to fold actin, and together they can return nascent or chemically denatured actin to its native state in a pure in vitro folding assay. The complexity of the CCT-actin system makes the study of the actin folding mechanism technically challenging. We have established a novel spectroscopic assay through selectively labeling the C terminus of yeast actin with acrylodan and observe significant changes in the acrylodan fluorescence emission spectrum as actin is chemically unfolded and then refolded by the chaperonin. The variation in the polarity of the environment surrounding the fluorescent probe during the unfolding/folding processes has allowed us to monitor actin as it folds on CCT. The rate of actin folding at a range of temperatures and ATP concentrations has been determined for both wild type CCT and a mutant CCT, CCT4anc2, defective in folding actin in vivo. Binding of the non-hydrolysable ATP analog adenosine 5′-(β,γ-imino)triphosphate to the ternary complex leads to 3-fold faster release of actin from CCT following addition of ATP, suggesting a two-step folding process with a conformational change occurring upon closure of the cavity and a subsequent final folding step involving packing of the C terminus to the native-like state. PMID:21056978

  8. Mechanically and optically reliable folding structure with a hyperelastic material for seamless foldable displays

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Kwon, Hyuk-Jun; Shim, HongShik; Kim, Sunkook; Choi, Woong; Chun, Youngtea; Kee, InSeo; Lee, SangYoon

    2011-04-01

    We report a mechanically and optically robust folding structure to realize a foldable active matrix organic-light-emitting-diode (AMOLED) display without a visible crease at the junction. A nonlinear stress analysis, based on a finite element method, provided an optimized design. The folding-unfolding test on the structure exhibited negligible deterioration of the relative brightness at the junction of the individual panels up to 105 cycles at a folding radius of 1 mm, indicating highly reliable mechanical and optical tolerances. These results demonstrate the feasibility of seamless foldable AMOLED displays, with potentially important technical implications on fabricating large size flexible displays.

  9. How Well Does a Funneled Energy Landscape Capture the Folding Mechanism of Spectrin Domains?

    PubMed Central

    2013-01-01

    Three structurally similar domains from α-spectrin have been shown to fold very differently. Firstly, there is a contrast in the folding mechanism, as probed by Φ-value analysis, between the R15 domain and the R16 and R17 domains. Secondly, there are very different contributions from internal friction to folding: the folding rate of the R15 domain was found to be inversely proportional to solvent viscosity, showing no apparent frictional contribution from the protein, but in the other two domains a large internal friction component was evident. Non-native misdocking of helices has been suggested to be responsible for this phenomenon. Here, I study the folding of these three proteins with minimalist coarse-grained models based on a funneled energy landscape. Remarkably, I find that, despite the absence of non-native interactions, the differences in folding mechanism of the domains are well captured by the model, and the agreement of the Φ-values with experiment is fairly good. On the other hand, within the context of this model, there are no significant differences in diffusion coefficient along the chosen folding coordinate, and the model cannot explain the large differences in folding rates between the proteins found experimentally. These results are nonetheless consistent with the expectations from the energy landscape perspective of protein folding: namely, that the folding mechanism is primarily determined by the native-like interactions present in the Gō-like model, with missing non-native interactions being required to explain the differences in “internal friction” seen in experiment. PMID:23947368

  10. Mechanical Regulation of Three-Dimensional Epithelial Fold Pattern Formation in the Mouse Oviduct.

    PubMed

    Koyama, Hiroshi; Shi, Dongbo; Suzuki, Makoto; Ueno, Naoto; Uemura, Tadashi; Fujimori, Toshihiko

    2016-08-01

    Epithelia exhibit various three-dimensional morphologies linked to organ function in animals. However, the mechanisms of three-dimensional morphogenesis remain elusive. The luminal epithelium of the mouse oviduct forms well-aligned straight folds along the longitudinal direction of the tubes. Disruption of the Celsr1 gene, a planar cell polarity-related gene, causes ectopically branched folds. Here, we evaluated the mechanical contributions of the epithelium to the fold pattern formation. In the mutant oviduct, the epithelium was more intricate along the longitudinal direction than in the wild-type, suggesting a higher ratio of the longitudinal length of the epithelial layer to that of the surrounding smooth muscle (SM) layer (L-Epi/SM ratio). Our mathematical modeling and computational simulations suggested that the L-Epi/SM ratio could explain the differences in fold branching between the two genotypes. Longitudinal epithelial tensions were increased in well-aligned folds compared with those in disorganized folds both in the simulations and in experimental estimations. Artificially increasing the epithelial tensions suppressed the branching in simulations, suggesting that the epithelial tensions can regulate fold patterning. The epithelial tensions could be explained by the combination of line tensions along the epithelial cell-cell boundaries with the polarized cell arrays observed in vivo. These results suggest that the fold pattern is associated with the polarized cell array through the longitudinal epithelial tension. Further simulations indicated that the L-Epi/SM ratio could contribute to fold pattern diversity, suggesting that the L-Epi/SM ratio is a critical parameter in the fold patterning in tubular organs. PMID:27508448

  11. Mechanical versus kinematical shortening reconstructions of the Zagros High Folded Zone (Kurdistan Region of Iraq)

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Frehner, M.; Reif, D.; Grasemann, B.

    2012-04-01

    Our study compares kinematical and mechanical techniques for the palinspastic reconstruction of folded cross-sections in collision orogens. The studied area and the reconstructed NE-SW-trending, 55.5 km long cross-section is located in the High Folded Zone of the Zagros fold-and-thrust belt in the Kurdistan Region of Iraq. The present-day geometry of the cross-section has been constructed from field, as well as remote sensing data. In a first step, the structures and the stratigraphy are simplified and summarized in eight units trying to identify the main geometric and mechanical parameters. In a second step, the shortening is kinematically estimated using the dip-domain method to 11%-15%. Then the same cross-section is used in a numerical finite-element model to perform dynamical unfolding simulations taking various rheological parameters into account. The main factor allowing for an efficient dynamic unfolding is the presence of interfacial slip conditions between the mechanically strong units. Other factors, such as Newtonian vs. power-law viscous rheology or the presence of a basement affect the numerical simulations much less strongly. If interfacial slip is accounted for, fold amplitudes are reduced efficiently during the dynamical unfolding simulations, while welded layer interfaces lead to unrealistic shortening estimates. It is suggested that interfacial slip and decoupling of the deformation along detachment horizons is an important mechanical parameter that controlled the folding processes in the Zagros High Folded Zone.

  12. Mechanical versus kinematical shortening reconstructions of the Zagros High Folded Zone (Kurdistan region of Iraq)

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Frehner, Marcel; Reif, Daniel; Grasemann, Bernhard

    2012-06-01

    This paper compares kinematical and mechanical techniques for the palinspastic reconstruction of folded cross sections in collision orogens. The studied area and the reconstructed NE-SW trending, 55.5 km long cross section is located in the High Folded Zone of the Zagros fold-and-thrust belt in the Kurdistan region of Iraq. The present-day geometry of the cross section has been constructed from field as well as remote sensing data. In a first step, the structures and the stratigraphy are simplified and summarized in eight units trying to identify the main geometric and mechanical parameters. In a second step, the shortening is kinematically estimated using the dip domain method to 11%-15%. Then the same cross section is used in a numerical finite element model to perform dynamical unfolding simulations taking various rheological parameters into account. The main factor allowing for an efficient dynamic unfolding is the presence of interfacial slip conditions between the mechanically strong units. Other factors, such as Newtonian versus power law viscous rheology or the presence of a basement, affect the numerical simulations much less strongly. If interfacial slip is accounted for, fold amplitudes are reduced efficiently during the dynamical unfolding simulations, while welded layer interfaces lead to unrealistic shortening estimates. It is suggested that interfacial slip and decoupling of the deformation along detachment horizons is an important mechanical parameter that controlled the folding processes in the Zagros High Folded Zone.

  13. Conservation of the C-type lectin fold for massive sequence variation in a Treponema diversity-generating retroelement

    SciTech Connect

    Le Coq, Johanne; Ghosh, Partho

    2012-06-19

    Anticipatory ligand binding through massive protein sequence variation is rare in biological systems, having been observed only in the vertebrate adaptive immune response and in a phage diversity-generating retroelement (DGR). Earlier work has demonstrated that the prototypical DGR variable protein, major tropism determinant (Mtd), meets the demands of anticipatory ligand binding by novel means through the C-type lectin (CLec) fold. However, because of the low sequence identity among DGR variable proteins, it has remained unclear whether the CLec fold is a general solution for DGRs. We have addressed this problem by determining the structure of a second DGR variable protein, TvpA, from the pathogenic oral spirochete Treponema denticola. Despite its weak sequence identity to Mtd ({approx}16%), TvpA was found to also have a CLec fold, with predicted variable residues exposed in a ligand-binding site. However, this site in TvpA was markedly more variable than the one in Mtd, reflecting the unprecedented approximate 10{sup 20} potential variability of TvpA. In addition, similarity between TvpA and Mtd with formylglycine-generating enzymes was detected. These results provide strong evidence for the conservation of the formylglycine-generating enzyme-type CLec fold among DGRs as a means of accommodating massive sequence variation.

  14. Understanding the Mechanism of Prosegment-catalyzed Folding by Solution NMR Spectroscopy*

    PubMed Central

    Wang, Shenlin; Horimoto, Yasumi; Dee, Derek R.; Yada, Rickey Y.

    2014-01-01

    Multidomain protein folding is often more complex than a two-state process, which leads to the spontaneous folding of the native state. Pepsin, a zymogen-derived enzyme, without its prosegment (PS), is irreversibly denatured and folds to a thermodynamically stable, non-native conformation, termed refolded pepsin, which is separated from native pepsin by a large activation barrier. While it is known that PS binds refolded pepsin and catalyzes its conversion to the native form, little structural details are known regarding this conversion. In this study, solution NMR was used to elucidate the PS-catalyzed folding mechanism by examining the key equilibrium states, e.g. native and refolded pepsin, both in the free and PS-bound states, and pepsinogen, the zymogen form of pepsin. Refolded pepsin was found to be partially structured and lacked the correct domain-domain structure and active-site cleft formed in the native state. Analysis of chemical shift data revealed that upon PS binding refolded pepsin folds into a state more similar to that of pepsinogen than to native pepsin. Comparison of pepsin folding by wild-type and mutant PSs, including a double mutant PS, indicated that hydrophobic interactions between residues of prosegment and refolded pepsin lower the folding activation barrier. A mechanism is proposed for the binding of PS to refolded pepsin and how the formation of the native structure is mediated. PMID:24265313

  15. Dependence of phonation threshold pressure on vocal tract acoustics and vocal fold tissue mechanics.

    PubMed

    Chan, Roger W; Titze, Ingo R

    2006-04-01

    Analytical and computer simulation studies have shown that the acoustic impedance of the vocal tract as well as the viscoelastic properties of vocal fold tissues are critical for determining the dynamics and the energy transfer mechanism of vocal fold oscillation. In the present study, a linear, small-amplitude oscillation theory was revised by taking into account the propagation of a mucosal wave and the inertive reactance (inertance) of the supraglottal vocal tract as the major energy transfer mechanisms for flow-induced self-oscillation of the vocal fold. Specifically, analytical results predicted that phonation threshold pressure (Pth) increases with the viscous shear properties of the vocal fold, but decreases with vocal tract inertance. This theory was empirically tested using a physical model of the larynx, where biological materials (fat, hyaluronic acid, and fibronectin) were implanted into the vocal fold cover to investigate the effect of vocal fold tissue viscoelasticity on Pth. A uniform-tube supraglottal vocal tract was also introduced to examine the effect of vocal tract inertance on Pth. Results showed that Pth decreased with the inertive impedance of the vocal tract and increased with the viscous shear modulus (G") or dynamic viscosity (eta') of the vocal fold cover, consistent with theoretical predictions. These findings supported the potential biomechanical benefits of hyaluronic acid as a surgical bioimplant for repairing voice disorders involving the superficial layer of the lamina propria, such as scarring, sulcus vocalis, atrophy, and Reinke's edema. PMID:16642848

  16. Toxin structures as evolutionary tools: Using conserved 3D folds to study the evolution of rapidly evolving peptides.

    PubMed

    Undheim, Eivind A B; Mobli, Mehdi; King, Glenn F

    2016-06-01

    Three-dimensional (3D) structures have been used to explore the evolution of proteins for decades, yet they have rarely been utilized to study the molecular evolution of peptides. Here, we highlight areas in which 3D structures can be particularly useful for studying the molecular evolution of peptide toxins. Although we focus our discussion on animal toxins, including one of the most widespread disulfide-rich peptide folds known, the inhibitor cystine knot, our conclusions should be widely applicable to studies of the evolution of disulfide-constrained peptides. We show that conserved 3D folds can be used to identify evolutionary links and test hypotheses regarding the evolutionary origin of peptides with extremely low sequence identity; construct accurate multiple sequence alignments; and better understand the evolutionary forces that drive the molecular evolution of peptides. Also watch the video abstract. PMID:27166747

  17. Uniqueness of conserved currents in quantum mechanics

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Holland, P.

    2003-10-01

    It is proved by a functional method that the conventional expression for the Dirac current is the only conserved 4-vector implied by the Dirac equation that is a function of just the quantum state. The demonstration is extended to derive the unique conserved currents implied by the coupled Maxwell-Dirac equations and the Klein-Gordon equation. The uniqueness of the usual Pauli and Schrödinger currents follows by regarding these as the non-relativistic limits of the Dirac and Klein-Gordon currents, respectively. The existence and properties of further conserved vectors that are not functions of just the state is examined.

  18. Mechanical Folding and Unfolding of Protein Barnase at the Single-Molecule Level.

    PubMed

    Alemany, Anna; Rey-Serra, Blanca; Frutos, Silvia; Cecconi, Ciro; Ritort, Felix

    2016-01-01

    The unfolding and folding of protein barnase has been extensively investigated in bulk conditions under the effect of denaturant and temperature. These experiments provided information about structural and kinetic features of both the native and the unfolded states of the protein, and debates about the possible existence of an intermediate state in the folding pathway have arisen. Here, we investigate the folding/unfolding reaction of protein barnase under the action of mechanical force at the single-molecule level using optical tweezers. We measure unfolding and folding force-dependent kinetic rates from pulling and passive experiments, respectively, and using Kramers-based theories (e.g., Bell-Evans and Dudko-Hummer-Szabo models), we extract the position of the transition state and the height of the kinetic barrier mediating unfolding and folding transitions, finding good agreement with previous bulk measurements. Measurements of the force-dependent kinetic barrier using the continuous effective barrier analysis show that protein barnase verifies the Leffler-Hammond postulate under applied force and allow us to extract its free energy of folding, ΔG0. The estimated value of ΔG0 is in agreement with our predictions obtained using fluctuation relations and previous bulk studies. To address the possible existence of an intermediate state on the folding pathway, we measure the power spectrum of force fluctuations at high temporal resolution (50 kHz) when the protein is either folded or unfolded and, additionally, we study the folding transition-path time at different forces. The finite bandwidth of our experimental setup sets the lifetime of potential intermediate states upon barnase folding/unfolding in the submillisecond timescale. PMID:26745410

  19. Probing the protein-folding mechanism using denaturant and temperature effects on rate constants

    PubMed Central

    Guinn, Emily J.; Kontur, Wayne S.; Tsodikov, Oleg V.; Shkel, Irina; Record, M. Thomas

    2013-01-01

    Protein folding has been extensively studied, but many questions remain regarding the mechanism. Characterizing early unstable intermediates and the high–free-energy transition state (TS) will help answer some of these. Here, we use effects of denaturants (urea, guanidinium chloride) and temperature on folding and unfolding rate constants and the overall equilibrium constant as probes of surface area changes in protein folding. We interpret denaturant kinetic m-values and activation heat capacity changes for 13 proteins to determine amounts of hydrocarbon and amide surface buried in folding to and from TS, and for complete folding. Predicted accessible surface area changes for complete folding agree in most cases with structurally determined values. We find that TS is advanced (50–90% of overall surface burial) and that the surface buried is disproportionately amide, demonstrating extensive formation of secondary structure in early intermediates. Models of possible pre-TS intermediates with all elements of the native secondary structure, created for several of these proteins, bury less amide and hydrocarbon surface than predicted for TS. Therefore, we propose that TS generally has both the native secondary structure and sufficient organization of other regions of the backbone to nucleate subsequent (post-TS) formation of tertiary interactions. The approach developed here provides proof of concept for the use of denaturants and other solutes as probes of amount and composition of the surface buried in coupled folding and other large conformational changes in TS and intermediates in protein processes. PMID:24043778

  20. A Better 2-D Mechanical Energy Conservation Experiment

    ERIC Educational Resources Information Center

    Paesler, Michael

    2012-01-01

    A variety of simple classical mechanics energy conservation experiments are used in teaching laboratories. Typical one-dimensional (1-D) setups may involve falling balls or oscillating springs. Many of these can be quite satisfying in that students can confirm--within a few percent--that mechanical energy is conserved. Students generally have…

  1. Conserved catalytic machinery and the prediction of a common fold for several families of glycosyl hydrolases.

    PubMed Central

    Henrissat, B; Callebaut, I; Fabrega, S; Lehn, P; Mornon, J P; Davies, G

    1995-01-01

    The regions surrounding the catalytic amino acids previously identified in a few "retaining" O-glycosyl hydrolases (EC 3.2.1) have been analyzed by hydrophobic cluster analysis and have been used to define sequence motifs. These motifs have been found in more than 150 glycosyl hydrolase sequences representing at least eight established protein families that act on a large variety of substrates. This allows the localization and the precise role of the catalytic residues (nucleophile and acid catalyst) to be predicted for each of these enzymes, including several lysosomal glycosidases. An identical arrangement of the catalytic nucleophile was also found for S-glycosyl hydrolases (myrosinases; EC 3.2.3.1) for which the acid catalyst is lacking. A (beta/alpha)8 barrel structure has been reported for two of the eight families of proteins that have been grouped. It is suggested that the six other families also share this fold at their catalytic domain. These enzymes illustrate how evolutionary events led to a wide diversification of substrate specificity with a similar disposition of identical catalytic residues onto the same ancestral (beta/alpha)8 barrel structure. Images Fig. 1 PMID:7624375

  2. Comparison of the Folding Mechanism of Highly Homologous Proteins in the Lipid-binding Protein Family

    EPA Science Inventory

    The folding mechanism of two closely related proteins in the intracellular lipid binding protein family, human bile acid binding protein (hBABP) and rat bile acid binding protein (rBABP) were examined. These proteins are 77% identical (93% similar) in sequence Both of these singl...

  3. Surface folding in metals: a mechanism for delamination wear in sliding

    PubMed Central

    Mahato, Anirban; Guo, Yang; Sundaram, Narayan K.; Chandrasekar, Srinivasan

    2014-01-01

    Using high-resolution, in situ imaging of a hard, wedge-shaped model asperity sliding against a metal surface, we demonstrate a new mechanism for particle formation and delamination wear. Damage to the residual surface is caused by the occurrence of folds on the free surface of the prow-shaped region ahead of the wedge. This damage manifests itself as shallow crack-like features and surface tears, which are inclined at very acute angles to the surface. The transformation of folds into cracks, tears and particles is directly captured. Notably, a single sliding pass is sufficient to damage the surface, and subsequent passes result in the generation of platelet-like wear particles. Tracking the folding process at every stage from surface bumps to folds to cracks/tears/particles ensures that there is no ambiguity in capturing the mechanism of wear. Because fold formation and consequent delamination are quite general, our findings have broad applicability beyond wear itself, including implications for design of surface generation and conditioning processes. PMID:25197251

  4. Spectroscopic Monitoring of Mechanical Forces during Protein Folding by using Molecular Force Probes.

    PubMed

    Stauch, Tim; Hoffmann, Marvin T; Dreuw, Andreas

    2016-05-18

    Detailed folding pathways of proteins are still largely unknown. Real-time monitoring of mechanical forces acting in proteins during structural transitions would provide deep insights into these highly complex processes. Here, we propose two molecular force probes that can be incorporated into the protein backbone to gain insight into the magnitude and direction of mechanical forces acting in proteins during natural folding and unfolding through their optical spectroscopic response. In fact, changes in the infrared and Raman spectra are proportional to the mechanical force deforming the force probes, and the relevant bands can be intensified and shifted to a transparent window in the protein spectrum by isotopic substitution. As a result, the proposed molecular force probes can act as "force rulers", allowing the spectroscopic observation and measurement of mechanical forces acting within the proteins under natural conditions without external perturbation. PMID:26928925

  5. Mechanical restoration of large-scale folded multilayers using the finite element method: Application to the Zagros Simply Folded Belt, N-Iraq

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Frehner, Marcel; Reif, Daniel; Grasemann, Bernhard

    2010-05-01

    There are a large number of numerical finite element studies concerned with modeling the evolution of folded geological layers through time. This body of research includes many aspects of folding and many different approaches, such as two- and three-dimensional studies, single-layer folding, detachment folding, development of chevron folds, Newtonian, power-law viscous and more complex rheologies, influence of anisotropy, pure-shear, simple-shear and other boundary conditions and so forth. In recent years, studies of multilayer folding emerged, thanks to more advanced mesh generator software and increased computational power. Common to all of these studies is the fact that they consider a forward directed time evolution, as in nature. Very few studies use the finite element method for reverse-time simulations. In such studies, folded geological layers are taken as initial conditions for the numerical simulation. The folding process is reversed by changing the signs of the boundary conditions that supposedly drove the folding process. In such studies, the geometry of the geological layers before the folding process is searched and the amount of shortening necessary for the final folded geometry can be calculated. In contrast to a kinematic or geometric fold restoration procedure, the described approach takes the mechanical behavior of the geological layers into account, such as rheology and the relative strength of the individual layers. This approach is therefore called mechanical restoration of folds. In this study, the concept of mechanical restoration is applied to a two-dimensional 50km long NE-SW-cross-section through the Zagros Simply Folded Belt in Iraqi Kurdistan, NE from the city of Erbil. The Simply Folded Belt is dominated by gentle to open folding and faults are either absent or record only minor offset. Therefore, this region is ideal for testing the concept of mechanical restoration. The profile used is constructed from structural field measurements

  6. STRUCTURAL FOLD, CONSERVATION AND FE(II) BINDING OF THE INTRACELLULAR DOMAIN OF PROKARYOTE FEOB

    PubMed Central

    Hung, Kuo-Wei; Chang, Yi-Wei; Eng, Edward T.; Chen, Jai-Hui; Chen, Yi-Chung; Sun, Yuh-Ju; Hsiao, Chwan-Deng; Dong, Gang; Spasov, Krasimir A.; Unger, Vinzenz M.; Huang, Tai-huang

    2010-01-01

    FeoB is a G-protein coupled membrane protein essential for Fe(II) uptake in prokaryotes. Here, we report the crystal structures of the intracellular domain of FeoB (NFeoB) from Klebsiella pneumoniae (KpNFeoB) and Pyrococcus furiosus (PfNFeoB) with and without bound ligands. In the structures, a canonical G-protein domain (G domain) is followed by a helical bundle domain (S-domain), which despite its lack of sequence similarity between species is structurally conserved. In the nucleotide-free state, the G-domain’s two switch regions point away from the binding site. This gives rise to an open binding pocket whose shallowness is likely to be responsible for the low nucleotide binding affinity. Nucleotide binding induced significant conformational changes in the G5 motif which in the case of GMPPNP binding was accompanied by destabilization of the switch I region. In addition to the structural data, we demonstrate that Fe(II)-induced foot printing cleaves the protein close to a putative Fe(II)-binding site at the tip of switch I, and we identify functionally important regions within the S-domain. Moreover, we show that NFeoB exists as a monomer in solution, and that its two constituent domains can undergo large conformational changes. The data show that the S-domain plays important roles in FeoB function. PMID:20123128

  7. Simulation based estimation of dynamic mechanical properties for viscoelastic materials used for vocal fold models

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Rupitsch, Stefan J.; Ilg, Jürgen; Sutor, Alexander; Lerch, Reinhard; Döllinger, Michael

    2011-08-01

    In order to obtain a deeper understanding of the human phonation process and the mechanisms generating sound, realistic setups are built up containing artificial vocal folds. Usually, these vocal folds consist of viscoelastic materials (e.g., polyurethane mixtures). Reliable simulation based studies on the setups require the mechanical properties of the utilized viscoelastic materials. The aim of this work is the identification of mechanical material parameters (Young's modulus, Poisson's ratio, and loss factor) for those materials. Therefore, we suggest a low-cost measurement setup, the so-called vibration transmission analyzer (VTA) enabling to analyze the transfer behavior of viscoelastic materials for propagating mechanical waves. With the aid of a mathematical Inverse Method, the material parameters are adjusted in a convenient way so that the simulation results coincide with the measurement results for the transfer behavior. Contrary to other works, we determine frequency dependent functions for the mechanical properties characterizing the viscoelastic material in the frequency range of human speech (100-250 Hz). The results for three different materials clearly show that the Poisson's ratio is close to 0.5 and that the Young's modulus increases with higher frequencies. For a frequency of 400 Hz, the Young's modulus of the investigated viscoelastic materials is approximately 80% higher than for the static case (0 Hz). We verify the identified mechanical properties with experiments on fabricated vocal fold models. Thereby, only small deviations between measurements and simulations occur.

  8. Three-Dimensional Domain Swapping Changes the Folding Mechanism of the Forkhead Domain of FoxP1.

    PubMed

    Medina, Exequiel; Córdova, Cristóbal; Villalobos, Pablo; Reyes, Javiera; Komives, Elizabeth A; Ramírez-Sarmiento, César A; Babul, Jorge

    2016-06-01

    The forkhead family of transcription factors (Fox) controls gene transcription during key processes such as regulation of metabolism, embryogenesis, and immunity. Structurally, Fox proteins feature a conserved DNA-binding domain known as forkhead. Interestingly, solved forkhead structures of members from the P subfamily (FoxP) show that they can oligomerize by three-dimensional domain swapping, whereby structural elements are exchanged between adjacent subunits, leading to an intertwined dimer. Recent evidence has largely stressed the biological relevance of domain swapping in FoxP, as several disease-causing mutations have been related to impairment of this process. Here, we explore the equilibrium folding and binding mechanism of the forkhead domain of wild-type FoxP1, and of two mutants that hinder DNA-binding (R53H) and domain swapping (A39P), using size-exclusion chromatography, circular dichroism, and hydrogen-deuterium exchange mass spectrometry. Our results show that domain swapping of FoxP1 occurs at micromolar protein concentrations within hours of incubation and is energetically favored, in contrast to classical domain-swapping proteins. Also, DNA-binding mutations do not significantly affect domain swapping. Remarkably, equilibrium unfolding of dimeric FoxP1 follows a three-state N2 ↔ 2I ↔ 2U folding mechanism in which dimer dissociation into a monomeric intermediate precedes protein unfolding, in contrast to the typical two-state model described for most domain-swapping proteins, whereas the A39P mutant follows a two-state N ↔ U folding mechanism consistent with the second transition observed for dimeric FoxP1. Also, the free-energy change of the N ↔ U in A39P FoxP1 is ∼2 kcal⋅mol(-1) larger than the I ↔ U transition of both wild-type and R53H FoxP1. Finally, hydrogen-deuterium exchange mass spectrometry reveals that the intermediate strongly resembles the native state. Our results suggest that domain swapping in FoxP1 is at least

  9. Conservation of Mechanical Energy Using Dry Ice Slider-Projectiles

    ERIC Educational Resources Information Center

    Gales, Jenna; Baker, Blane

    2008-01-01

    Energy concepts are fundamentally important for describing and analyzing systems ranging from subatomic particles to spiral galaxies. In general, students first encounter such concepts in introductory courses that typically focus on forms of energy, energy transfer, and conservation laws. Within these courses, conservation of mechanical energy is…

  10. Nonadditivity in Conformational Entropy upon Molecular Rigidification Reveals a Universal Mechanism Affecting Folding Cooperativity

    PubMed Central

    Vorov, Oleg K.; Livesay, Dennis R.; Jacobs, Donald J.

    2011-01-01

    Previously, we employed a Maxwell counting distance constraint model (McDCM) to describe α-helix formation in polypeptides. Unlike classical helix-coil transition theories, the folding mechanism derives from nonadditivity in conformational entropy caused by rigidification of molecular structure as intramolecular cross-linking interactions form along the backbone. For example, when a hydrogen bond forms within a flexible region, both energy and conformational entropy decrease. However, no conformational entropy is lost when the region is already rigid because atomic motions are not constrained further. Unlike classical zipper models, the same mechanism also describes a coil-to-β-hairpin transition. Special topological features of the helix and hairpin structures allow the McDCM to be solved exactly. Taking full advantage of the fact that Maxwell constraint counting is a mean field approximation applied to the distribution of cross-linking interactions, we present an exact transfer matrix method that does not require any special topological feature. Upon application of the model to proteins, cooperativity within the folding transition is yet again appropriately described. Notwithstanding other contributing factors such as the hydrophobic effect, this simple model identifies a universal mechanism for cooperativity within polypeptide and protein-folding transitions, and it elucidates scaling laws describing hydrogen-bond patterns observed in secondary structure. In particular, the native state should have roughly twice as many constraints as there are degrees of freedom in the coil state to ensure high fidelity in two-state folding cooperativity, which is empirically observed. PMID:21320459

  11. Conformational propensities of intrinsically disordered proteins influence the mechanism of binding and folding

    PubMed Central

    Arai, Munehito; Sugase, Kenji; Dyson, H. Jane; Wright, Peter E.

    2015-01-01

    Intrinsically disordered proteins (IDPs) frequently function in protein interaction networks that regulate crucial cellular signaling pathways. Many IDPs undergo transitions from disordered conformational ensembles to folded structures upon binding to their cellular targets. Several possible binding mechanisms for coupled folding and binding have been identified: folding of the IDP after association with the target (“induced fit”), or binding of a prefolded state in the conformational ensemble of the IDP to the target protein (“conformational selection”), or some combination of these two extremes. The interaction of the intrinsically disordered phosphorylated kinase-inducible domain (pKID) of the cAMP-response element binding (CREB) protein with the KIX domain of a general transcriptional coactivator CREB-binding protein (CBP) provides an example of the induced-fit mechanism. Here we show by NMR relaxation dispersion experiments that a different intrinsically disordered ligand, the transactivation domain of the transcription factor c-Myb, interacts with KIX at the same site as pKID but via a different binding mechanism that involves elements of conformational selection and induced fit. In contrast to pKID, the c-Myb activation domain has a strong propensity for spontaneous helix formation in its N-terminal region, which binds to KIX in a predominantly folded conformation. The C-terminal region of c-Myb exhibits a much smaller helical propensity and likely folds via an induced-fit process after binding to KIX. We propose that the intrinsic secondary structure propensities of pKID and c-Myb determine their binding mechanisms, consistent with their functions as inducible and constitutive transcriptional activators. PMID:26195786

  12. Order of steps in the cytochrome C folding pathway: evidence for a sequential stabilization mechanism.

    PubMed

    Krishna, Mallela M G; Maity, Haripada; Rumbley, Jon N; Lin, Yan; Englander, S Walter

    2006-06-23

    Previous work used hydrogen exchange (HX) experiments in kinetic and equilibrium modes to study the reversible unfolding and refolding of cytochrome c (Cyt c) under native conditions. Accumulated results now show that Cyt c is composed of five individually cooperative folding units, called foldons, which unfold and refold as concerted units in a stepwise pathway sequence. The first three steps of the folding pathway are linear and sequential. The ordering of the last two steps has been unclear because the fast HX of the amino acid residues in these foldons has made measurement difficult. New HX experiments done under slower exchange conditions show that the final two foldons do not unfold and refold in an obligatory sequence. They unfold separately and neither unfolding obligately contains the other, as indicated by their similar unfolding surface exposure and the specific effects of destabilizing and stabilizing mutations, pH change, and oxidation state. These results taken together support a sequential stabilization mechanism in which folding occurs in the native context with prior native-like structure serving to template the stepwise formation of subsequent native-like foldon units. Where the native structure of Cyt c requires sequential folding, in the first three steps, this is found. Where structural determination is ambiguous, in the final two steps, alternative parallel folding is found. PMID:16690080

  13. Protein Folding Mechanism of the Dimeric AmphiphysinII/Bin1 N-BAR Domain

    PubMed Central

    Gruber, Tobias; Balbach, Jochen

    2015-01-01

    The human AmphyphisinII/Bin1 N-BAR domain belongs to the BAR domain superfamily, whose members sense and generate membrane curvatures. The N-BAR domain is a 57 kDa homodimeric protein comprising a six helix bundle. Here we report the protein folding mechanism of this protein as a representative of this protein superfamily. The concentration dependent thermodynamic stability was studied by urea equilibrium transition curves followed by fluorescence and far-UV CD spectroscopy. Kinetic unfolding and refolding experiments, including rapid double and triple mixing techniques, allowed to unravel the complex folding behavior of N-BAR. The equilibrium unfolding transition curve can be described by a two-state process, while the folding kinetics show four refolding phases, an additional burst reaction and two unfolding phases. All fast refolding phases show a rollover in the chevron plot but only one of these phases depends on the protein concentration reporting the dimerization step. Secondary structure formation occurs during the three fast refolding phases. The slowest phase can be assigned to a proline isomerization. All kinetic experiments were also followed by fluorescence anisotropy detection to verify the assignment of the dimerization step to the respective folding phase. Based on these experiments we propose for N-BAR two parallel folding pathways towards the homodimeric native state depending on the proline conformation in the unfolded state. PMID:26368922

  14. Kinetic folding mechanism of an integral membrane protein examined by pulsed oxidative labeling and mass spectrometry.

    PubMed

    Pan, Yan; Brown, Leonid; Konermann, Lars

    2011-07-01

    We report the application of pulsed oxidative labeling for deciphering the folding mechanism of a membrane protein. SDS-denatured bacteriorhodopsin (BR) was refolded by mixing with bicelles in the presence of free retinal. At various time points (20 ms to 1 day), the protein was exposed to a microsecond ·OH pulse that induces oxidative modifications at solvent-accessible methionine side chains. The extent of labeling was determined by mass spectrometry. These measurements were complemented by stopped-flow spectroscopy. Major time-dependent changes in solvent accessibility were detected for M20 (helix A) and M118 (helix D). Our kinetic data indicate a sequential folding mechanism, consistent with models previously suggested by others on the basis of optical data. Yet, ·OH labeling provides additional structural insights. An initial folding intermediate I(1) gets populated within 20 ms, concomitantly with formation of helix A. Subsequent structural consolidation leads to a transient species I(2). Noncovalent retinal binding to I(2) induces folding of helix D, thereby generating an intermediate I(R). In the absence of retinal, the latter transition does not take place. Hence, formation of helix D depends on retinal binding, whereas this is not the case for helix A. As the cofactor settles deeper into its binding pocket, a final transient species I(R) is generated. This intermediate converts into native BR within minutes by formation of the retinal-K216 Schiff base linkage. The combination of pulsed covalent labeling and optical spectroscopy employed here should also be suitable for exploring the folding mechanisms of other membrane proteins. PMID:21570983

  15. Deformation mechanisms and strain history of a minor fold from the Appalachian Valley and Ridge Province

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Spang, J. H.; Groshong, R. H.

    1981-02-01

    We have re-examined a minor fold in the Silurian McKenzie limestone, collected from the Cacapon Mountain anticline where the anticline crosses the Potomoc River. The fold was originally studied by James Conel (1962). We have determined the strain and deformation mechanisms in both the hinge and the limbs of one layer. The layer is towards the inner arc of a multilayer containing one other bed of comparable thickness and numerous thinner beds, all separated by thin shale beds and enclosed in shale. Intragranular deformation mechanisms related to folding include faults and replacement veins. The faults represent a complex interrelationship between shear displacement, pressure solution, and extension veins containing fibrous calcite. The faults are curved and have the effect of moving material into the inner arc of the hinge zone. The replacement veins occur normal to bedding on the outer arc of the hinge. Pressure solution zones normal to bedding are absent and so is cleavage. Intragranular strain is measured on twinned calcite using the least-squares strain gage technique. Based on all the data, the maximum compressive strain, ɛ 1, is everywhere subparallel to layering and approximately perpendicular to the fold axis. The maximum extension strain is everywhere subparallel to the fold axis. The largest ɛ 1 values (-12.7 and -11.0%) occur in the inner arc of the hinge; the smallest ɛ 1 (-2.1%) is in the outer arc of the hinge. The limbs have intermediate values of ɛ 1. Intragranular layer-parallel shear strain on the limbs is small and indicates a relative motion of material away from the hinge in the inner arc with respect to the outer arc.

  16. A Conserved Mechanism for Sulfonucleotide Reduction

    PubMed Central

    2005-01-01

    Sulfonucleotide reductases are a diverse family of enzymes that catalyze the first committed step of reductive sulfur assimilation. In this reaction, activated sulfate in the context of adenosine-5′-phosphosulfate (APS) or 3′-phosphoadenosine 5′-phosphosulfate (PAPS) is converted to sulfite with reducing equivalents from thioredoxin. The sulfite generated in this reaction is utilized in bacteria and plants for the eventual production of essential biomolecules such as cysteine and coenzyme A. Humans do not possess a homologous metabolic pathway, and thus, these enzymes represent attractive targets for therapeutic intervention. Here we studied the mechanism of sulfonucleotide reduction by APS reductase from the human pathogen Mycobacterium tuberculosis, using a combination of mass spectrometry and biochemical approaches. The results support the hypothesis of a two-step mechanism in which the sulfonucleotide first undergoes rapid nucleophilic attack to form an enzyme-thiosulfonate (E-Cys-S-SO3−) intermediate. Sulfite is then released in a thioredoxin-dependent manner. Other sulfonucleotide reductases from structurally divergent subclasses appear to use the same mechanism, suggesting that this family of enzymes has evolved from a common ancestor. PMID:16008502

  17. Distribution of pre-folding linear indicators of movement direction around the Spring Hill Synform, Vermont: significance for mechanism of folding in this portion of the Appalachians

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Bell, T. H.; Hickey, K. A.

    1997-06-01

    Three distinctly oriented sets of pre-folding, and one set of syn-folding, axes of curved inclusion trails are preserved in garnet porphyroblasts in 50 samples around the doubly plunging Spring Hill Synform in southeast Vermont. Over one third of the samples contain consistent changes in the trend of these axes from the core to rim. Since the core grew before the rim this enabled the relative timing of each set of axes to be determined, from the oldest to the youngest, as NE-SW, E-W, NNW-SSE and NNE-SSW. The youngest trend is parallel to the axial plane of the regional folds. Only those samples with the latter trend have their inclusion trails connected continuously to the matrix foliation. The three pre-folding sets of axes have the same orientation on both limbs. This consistency in orientation has significant implications for the processes operating during folding, and three mechanisms are presented that could potentially explain it. These involve the classic card deck model of shear folding, De Sitter's model of clay bricks shortening as they shear past one another, and the progressive bulk inhomogeneous shortening model. The relative merits of each of these models are discussed.

  18. Exploring the mechanisms used by promiscuous chaperones to assist protein folding in the cell

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Jewett, Andrew I.

    There are two popular theories to explain how molecular chaperones boost the yield of folded protein in the cell: According to the Anfinsen cage model, (ACM) chaperonins protect denatured proteins from aggregation. A competing theory, the iterative annealing model (IAM) claims that ATP regulated chaperone binding and release accelerates folding by freeing proteins from long-lived kinetic traps. We present experimental and kinetic evidence to argue that the IAM is not a complete picture of how the GroEL/ES chaperonin works. Surprisingly some substrate proteins experience folding rate enhancements without undergoing multiple rounds of ATP-induced binding and release from the chaperonin. An explanation of this data requires going beyond the ACM and IAM models. Our work uses molecular dynamics simulations to investigate the folding of a highly frustrated protein within a chaperonin cavity. The chaperonin interior is modeled by a sphere with variable degree of attraction to the protein inside. We demonstrate that this cavity, similar to the weakly hydrophobic interior of the GroEL cavity upon complexion with ATP and GroES, is sufficient to accelerate the folding of a frustrated protein by more than an order of magnitude. Our simulations uncover a novel form of the IAM in which the substrate exhibits spontaneous binding and release from the wall of the chaperonin cage. This mimics the behavior observed in the standard IAM, with the difference that thermal fluctuations, rather than ATP, allow the substrate to unbind from the chaperone. An growing number of smaller cageless chaperones have been discovered that can assist protein folding without the consumption of ATP, including artificial "minichaperones" (fragments of larger chaperones). It is tempting to speculate that the same thermally-driven IAM mechanism could play a role with these chaperones as well. We performed additional simulations of protein folding outside the sphere. We find that in order to accelerate

  19. Optical measurements of vocal fold tensile properties: implications for phonatory mechanics.

    PubMed

    Kelleher, Jordan E; Siegmund, Thomas; Chan, Roger W; Henslee, Erin A

    2011-06-01

    In voice research, in vitro tensile stretch experiments of vocal fold tissues are commonly employed to determine the tissue biomechanical properties. In the standard stretch-release protocol, tissue deformation is computed from displacements applied to sutures inserted through the thyroid and arytenoid cartilages, with the cartilages assumed to be rigid. Here, a non-contact optical method was employed to determine the actual tissue deformation of vocal fold lamina propria specimens from three excised human larynges in uniaxial tensile tests. Specimen deformation was found to consist not only of deformation of the tissue itself, but also deformation of the cartilages, as well as suture alignment and tightening. Stress-stretch curves of a representative load cycle were characterized by an incompressible Ogden model. The initial longitudinal elastic modulus was found to be considerably higher if determined based on optical displacement measurements than typical values reported in the literature. The present findings could change the understanding of the mechanics underlying vocal fold vibration. Given the high longitudinal elastic modulus the lamina propria appeared to demonstrate a substantial level of anisotropy. Consequently, transverse shear could play a significant role in vocal fold vibration, and fundamental frequencies of phonation should be predicted by beam theories accounting for such effects. PMID:21497355

  20. Validation of theoretical models of phonation threshold pressure with data from a vocal fold mechanical replica.

    PubMed

    Lucero, Jorge C; Van Hirtum, Annemie; Ruty, Nicolas; Cisonni, Julien; Pelorson, Xavier

    2009-02-01

    This paper analyzes the capability of a mucosal wave model of the vocal fold to predict values of phonation threshold lung pressure. Equations derived from the model are fitted to pressure data collected from a mechanical replica of the vocal folds. The results show that a recent extension of the model to include an arbitrary delay of the mucosal wave in its travel along the glottal channel provides a better approximation to the data than the original version of the model, which assumed a small delay. They also show that modeling the vocal tract as a simple inertive load, as has been proposed in recent analytical studies of phonation, fails to capture the effect of the vocal tract on the phonation threshold pressure with reasonable accuracy. PMID:19206840

  1. A Better 2-D Mechanical Energy Conservation Experiment

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Paesler, Michael

    2012-02-01

    A variety of simple classical mechanics energy conservation experiments are used in teaching laboratories. Typical one-dimensional (1-D) setups may involve falling balls or oscillating springs. Many of these can be quite satisfying in that students can confirm—within a few percent—that mechanical energy is conserved. Students generally have little trouble identifying discrepancies such as the loss of a few percent of the gravitational potential energy due to air friction encountered by a falling ball. Two-dimensional (2-D) systems can require more sophisticated analysis for higher level laboratories, but such systems often incorporate complicating components that can make the exercise academically incomplete and experimentally less accurate. The following describes a simple 2-D energy conservation experiment based on the popular "Newton's Cradle" toy that allows students to account for nearly all of the mechanical energy in the system in an academically complete analysis.

  2. Conservation laws in the quantum mechanics of closed systems

    SciTech Connect

    Hartle, J.B. ||; Laflamme, R. |; Marolf, D.

    1995-06-15

    We investigate conservation laws in the quantum mechanics of closed systems and begin by reviewing an argument that exact decoherence implies the exact conservation of quantities that commute with the Hamiltonian. However, we also show that decoherence limits the alternatives that can be included in sets of histories that assess the conservation of these quantities. In the case of charge and energy, these limitations would be severe were these quantities not coupled to a gauge field. However, for the realistic cases of electric charge coupled to the electromagnetic field and mass coupled to spacetime curvature, we show that when alternative values of charge and mass decohere they always decohere exactly and are exactly conserved. Further, while decohering histories that describe possible changes in time of the total charge and mass are also subject to the limitations mentioned above, we show that these do not, in fact, restrict {ital physical} alternatives and are therefore not really limitations at all.

  3. The DNAJA2 substrate release mechanism is essential for chaperone-mediated folding.

    PubMed

    Baaklini, Imad; Wong, Michael J H; Hantouche, Christine; Patel, Yogita; Shrier, Alvin; Young, Jason C

    2012-12-01

    DNAJA1 (DJA1/Hdj2) and DNAJA2 (DJA2) are the major J domain partners of human Hsp70/Hsc70 chaperones. Although they have overall similarity with the well characterized type I co-chaperones from yeast and bacteria, they are biologically distinct, and their functional mechanisms are poorly characterized. We identified DJA2-specific activities in luciferase folding and repression of human ether-a-go-go-related gene (HERG) trafficking that depended on its expression levels in cells. Mutations in different internal domains of DJA2 abolished these effects. Using purified proteins, we addressed the mechanistic defects. A mutant lacking the region between the zinc finger motifs (DJA2-Δm2) was able to bind substrate similar to wild type but was incapable of releasing substrate during its transfer to Hsc70. The equivalent mutation in DJA1 also abolished its substrate release. A DJA2 mutant (DJA-221), which had its C-terminal dimerization region replaced by that of DJA1, was inactive but retained its ability to release substrate. The release mechanism required the J domain and ATP hydrolysis by Hsc70, although the nucleotide dependence diverged between DJA2 and DJA1. Limited proteolysis suggested further conformational differences between the two wild-type co-chaperones and the mutants. Our results demonstrate an essential role of specific DJA domains in the folding mechanism of Hsc70. PMID:23091061

  4. The DNAJA2 Substrate Release Mechanism Is Essential for Chaperone-mediated Folding*

    PubMed Central

    Baaklini, Imad; Wong, Michael J. H.; Hantouche, Christine; Patel, Yogita; Shrier, Alvin; Young, Jason C.

    2012-01-01

    DNAJA1 (DJA1/Hdj2) and DNAJA2 (DJA2) are the major J domain partners of human Hsp70/Hsc70 chaperones. Although they have overall similarity with the well characterized type I co-chaperones from yeast and bacteria, they are biologically distinct, and their functional mechanisms are poorly characterized. We identified DJA2-specific activities in luciferase folding and repression of human ether-a-go-go-related gene (HERG) trafficking that depended on its expression levels in cells. Mutations in different internal domains of DJA2 abolished these effects. Using purified proteins, we addressed the mechanistic defects. A mutant lacking the region between the zinc finger motifs (DJA2-Δm2) was able to bind substrate similar to wild type but was incapable of releasing substrate during its transfer to Hsc70. The equivalent mutation in DJA1 also abolished its substrate release. A DJA2 mutant (DJA-221), which had its C-terminal dimerization region replaced by that of DJA1, was inactive but retained its ability to release substrate. The release mechanism required the J domain and ATP hydrolysis by Hsc70, although the nucleotide dependence diverged between DJA2 and DJA1. Limited proteolysis suggested further conformational differences between the two wild-type co-chaperones and the mutants. Our results demonstrate an essential role of specific DJA domains in the folding mechanism of Hsc70. PMID:23091061

  5. Protein Folding Modulates the Swapped Dimerization Mechanism of Methyl-Accepting Chemotaxis Heme Sensors

    PubMed Central

    Silva, Marta A.; Lucas, Tânia G.; Salgueiro, Carlos A.; Gomes, Cláudio M.

    2012-01-01

    The periplasmic sensor domains GSU0582 and GSU0935 are part of methyl accepting chemotaxis proteins in the bacterium Geobacter sulfurreducens. Both contain one c-type heme group and their crystal structures revealed that these domains form swapped dimers with a PAS fold formed from the two protein chains. The swapped dimerization of these sensors is related to the mechanism of signal transduction and the formation of the swapped dimer involves significant folding changes and conformational rearrangements within each monomeric component. However, the structural changes occurring during this process are poorly understood and lack a mechanistic framework. To address this issue, we have studied the folding and stability properties of two distinct heme-sensor PAS domains, using biophysical spectroscopies. We observed substantial differences in the thermodynamic stability (ΔG = 14.6 kJ.mol−1 for GSU0935 and ΔG = 26.3 kJ.mol−1 for GSU0582), and demonstrated that the heme moiety undergoes conformational changes that match those occurring at the global protein structure. This indicates that sensing by the heme cofactor induces conformational changes that rapidly propagate to the protein structure, an effect which is directly linked to the signal transduction mechanism. Interestingly, the two analyzed proteins have distinct levels of intrinsic disorder (25% for GSU0935 and 13% for GSU0582), which correlate with conformational stability differences. This provides evidence that the sensing threshold and intensity of the propagated allosteric effect is linked to the stability of the PAS-fold, as this property modulates domain swapping and dimerization. Analysis of the PAS-domain shows that disorder segments are found either at the hinge region that controls helix motions or in connecting segments of the β-sheet interface. The latter is known to be widely involved in both intra- and intermolecular interactions, supporting the view that it's folding and stability

  6. Conservation of Mechanical and Electric Energy: Simple Experimental Verification

    ERIC Educational Resources Information Center

    Ponikvar, D.; Planinsic, G.

    2009-01-01

    Two similar experiments on conservation of energy and transformation of mechanical into electrical energy are presented. Both can be used in classes, as they offer numerous possibilities for discussion with students and are simple to perform. Results are presented and are precise within 20% for the version of the experiment where measured values…

  7. A three-dimensional statistical mechanical model of folding double-stranded chain molecules

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Zhang, Wenbing; Chen, Shi-Jie

    2001-05-01

    Based on a graphical representation of intrachain contacts, we have developed a new three-dimensional model for the statistical mechanics of double-stranded chain molecules. The theory has been tested and validated for the cubic lattice chain conformations. The statistical mechanical model can be applied to the equilibrium folding thermodynamics of a large class of chain molecules, including protein β-hairpin conformations and RNA secondary structures. The application of a previously developed two-dimensional model to RNA secondary structure folding thermodynamics generally overestimates the breadth of the melting curves [S-J. Chen and K. A. Dill, Proc. Natl. Acad. Sci. U.S.A. 97, 646 (2000)], suggesting an underestimation for the sharpness of the conformational transitions. In this work, we show that the new three-dimensional model gives much sharper melting curves than the two-dimensional model. We believe that the new three-dimensional model may give much improved predictions for the thermodynamic properties of RNA conformational changes than the previous two-dimensional model.

  8. Metric space formulation of quantum mechanical conservation laws

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Sharp, P. M.; D'Amico, I.

    2014-03-01

    We show that conservation laws in quantum mechanics naturally lead to metric spaces for the set of related physical quantities. All such metric spaces have an "onion-shell" geometry. We demonstrate the power of this approach by considering many-body systems immersed in a magnetic field, with a finite ground state current. In the associated metric spaces we find regions of allowed and forbidden distances, a "band structure" in metric space directly arising from the conservation of the z component of the angular momentum.

  9. Folding to Curved Surfaces: A Generalized Design Method and Mechanics of Origami-based Cylindrical Structures.

    PubMed

    Wang, Fei; Gong, Haoran; Chen, Xi; Chen, C Q

    2016-01-01

    Origami structures enrich the field of mechanical metamaterials with the ability to convert morphologically and systematically between two-dimensional (2D) thin sheets and three-dimensional (3D) spatial structures. In this study, an in-plane design method is proposed to approximate curved surfaces of interest with generalized Miura-ori units. Using this method, two combination types of crease lines are unified in one reprogrammable procedure, generating multiple types of cylindrical structures. Structural completeness conditions of the finite-thickness counterparts to the two types are also proposed. As an example of the design method, the kinematics and elastic properties of an origami-based circular cylindrical shell are analysed. The concept of Poisson's ratio is extended to the cylindrical structures, demonstrating their auxetic property. An analytical model of rigid plates linked by elastic hinges, consistent with numerical simulations, is employed to describe the mechanical response of the structures. Under particular load patterns, the circular shells display novel mechanical behaviour such as snap-through and limiting folding positions. By analysing the geometry and mechanics of the origami structures, we extend the design space of mechanical metamaterials and provide a basis for their practical applications in science and engineering. PMID:27624892

  10. Flux continuity and probability conservation in complexified Bohmian mechanics

    SciTech Connect

    Poirier, Bill

    2008-02-15

    Recent years have seen increased interest in complexified Bohmian mechanical trajectory calculations for quantum systems as both a pedagogical and computational tool. In the latter context, it is essential that trajectories satisfy probability conservation to ensure they are always guided to where they are most needed. We consider probability conservation for complexified Bohmian trajectories. The analysis relies on time-reversal symmetry considerations, leading to a generalized expression for the conjugation of wave functions of complexified variables. This in turn enables meaningful discussion of complexified flux continuity, which turns out not to be satisfied in general, though a related property is found to be true. The main conclusion, though, is that even under a weak interpretation, probability is not conserved along complex Bohmian trajectories.

  11. The E. coli thioredoxin folding mechanism: the key role of the C-terminal helix.

    PubMed

    Vazquez, Diego S; Sánchez, Ignacio E; Garrote, Ana; Sica, Mauricio P; Santos, Javier

    2015-02-01

    In this work, the unfolding mechanism of oxidized Escherichia coli thioredoxin (EcTRX) was investigated experimentally and computationally. We characterized seven point mutants distributed along the C-terminal α-helix (CTH) and the preceding loop. The mutations destabilized the protein against global unfolding while leaving the native structure unchanged. Global analysis of the unfolding kinetics of all variants revealed a linear unfolding route with a high-energy on-pathway intermediate state flanked by two transition state ensembles TSE1 and TSE2. The experiments show that CTH is mainly unfolded in TSE1 and the intermediate and becomes structured in TSE2. Structure-based molecular dynamics are in agreement with these experiments and provide protein-wide structural information on transient states. In our model, EcTRX folding starts with structure formation in the β-sheet, while the protein helices coalesce later. As a whole, our results indicate that the CTH is a critical module in the folding process, restraining a heterogeneous intermediate ensemble into a biologically active native state and providing the native protein with thermodynamic and kinetic stability. PMID:25463044

  12. Mechanics of fold-and-thrust belts and accretionary wedges Cohesive Coulomb theory

    NASA Technical Reports Server (NTRS)

    Dahlen, F. A.; Suppe, J.; Davis, D.

    1984-01-01

    A self-consistent theory for the mechanics of thin-skinned accretionary Coulomb wedges is developed and applied to the active fold-and-thrust belt of western Taiwan. The state of stress everywhere within a critical wedge is determined by solving the static equilibrium equations subject to the appropriate boundary conditions. The influence of wedge cohesion, which gives rise to a concave curvature of the critical topographic surface and affects the orientation of the principal stresses and Coulomb fracture within the wedge, is considered. The shape of the topographic surface and the angles at which thrust faults step up from the basal decollement in the Taiwanese belt is analyzed taking into account the extensive structural and fluid-pressure data available there. It is concluded that the gross geometry and structure of the Taiwan wedge are consistent with normal laboratory frictional and fracture strengths of sedimentary rocks.

  13. Mechanical cavopulmonary assist for the univentricular Fontan circulation using a novel folding propeller blood pump.

    PubMed

    Throckmorton, Amy L; Ballman, Kimberly K; Myers, Cynthia D; Litwak, Kenneth N; Frankel, Steven H; Rodefeld, Mark D

    2007-01-01

    A blood pump specifically designed to operate in the unique anatomic and physiologic conditions of a cavopulmonary connection has never been developed. Mechanical augmentation of cavopulmonary blood flow in a univentricular circulation would reduce systemic venous pressure, increase preload to the single ventricle, and temporarily reproduce a scenario analogous to the normal two-ventricle circulation. We hypothesize that a folding propeller blood pump would function optimally in this cavopulmonary circulation. The hydraulic performance of a two-bladed propeller prototype was characterized in an experimental flow loop using a blood analog fluid for 0.5-3.5 lpm at rotational speeds of 3,600-4,000 rpm. We also created five distinctive blood pump designs and evaluated their hydraulic performance using computational fluid dynamics (CFD). The two-bladed prototype performed well over the design range of 0.5-3.5 lpm, producing physiologic pressure rises of 5-18 mm Hg. Building upon this proof-of-concept testing, the CFD analysis of the five numerical models predicted a physiologic pressure range of 5-40 mm Hg over 0.5-4 lpm for rotational speeds of 3,000-7,000 rpm. These preliminary propeller designs and the two-bladed prototype achieved the expected hydraulic performance. Optimization of these configurations will reduce fluid stress levels, remove regions of recirculation, and improve the hydraulic performance of the folding propeller. This propeller design produces the physiologic pressures and flows that are in the ideal range to mechanically support the cavopulmonary circulation and represents an exciting new therapeutic option for the support of a univentricular Fontan circulation. PMID:18043158

  14. Constraints on bed scale fracture chronology with a FEM mechanical model of folding: The case of Split Mountain (Utah, USA)

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Sassi, W.; Guiton, M. L. E.; Leroy, Y. M.; Daniel, J.-M.; Callot, J.-P.

    2012-11-01

    A technique is presented for improving the structural analysis of natural fractures development in large scale fold structures. A 3D restoration of a fold provides the external displacement loading conditions to solve, by the finite element method, the forward mechanical problem of an idealized rock material with a stress-strain relationship based on the activation of pervasive fracture sets. In this elasto-plasticity constitutive law, any activated fracture set contributes to the total plastic strain by either an opening or a sliding mode of rock failure. Inherited versus syn-folding fracture sets development can be studied using this mechanical model. The workflow of this methodology was applied to the Weber sandstone formation deformed by forced folding at Split Mountain Anticline, Utah for which the different fracture sets were created and developed successively during the Sevier and the syn-folding Laramide orogenic phases. The field observations at the top stratigraphic surface of the Weber sandstone lead to classify the fracture sets into a pre-fold WNW-ESE fracture set, and a NE-SW fracture set post-dating the former. The development and relative chronology of the fracture sets are discussed based on the geomechanical modeling results. Starting with a 3D restoration of the Split Mountain Anticline, three fold-fracture development models were generated, alternately assuming that the WNW-ESE fracture set is either present or absent prior to folding process. Depending on the initial fracture configuration, the calculated fracture patterns are markedly different, showing that assuming a WNW-ESE joint set to predate the fold best correlates with field observations. This study is a first step addressing the complex problem of identification of fold-related fracturing events using an elementary concept of rock mechanics. When tight to complementary field observations, including petrography, diagenesis and burial history, the approach can be used to better

  15. When Less is More: Novel Mechanisms of Iron Conservation

    PubMed Central

    Bayeva, Marina; Chang, Hsiang-Chun; Wu, Rongxue; Ardehali, Hossein

    2016-01-01

    Disorders of iron homeostasis are very common, yet the molecular mechanisms of iron regulation remain understudied. Over 20 years have passed since the first characterization of iron regulatory proteins (IRP) as mediators of cellular iron deficiency response in mammals through iron acquisition. However, little is known about other mechanisms necessary for adaptation to low-iron states. In this review we present recent evidence that establishes existence of a new iron regulatory pathway aimed at iron conservation and optimization of iron use through suppression of non-essential iron-consuming processes. Moreover, we discuss the possible links between iron homeostasis and energy metabolism uncovered by studies of iron deficiency response. PMID:23948590

  16. A unified mechanism for protein folding: predetermined pathways with optional errors.

    PubMed

    Krishna, Mallela M G; Englander, S Walter

    2007-03-01

    There is a fundamental conflict between two different views of how proteins fold. Kinetic experiments and theoretical calculations are often interpreted in terms of different population fractions folding through different intermediates in independent unrelated pathways (IUP model). However, detailed structural information indicates that all of the protein population folds through a sequence of intermediates predetermined by the foldon substructure of the target protein and a sequential stabilization principle. These contrary views can be resolved by a predetermined pathway--optional error (PPOE) hypothesis. The hypothesis is that any pathway intermediate can incorporate a chance misfolding error that blocks folding and must be reversed for productive folding to continue. Different fractions of the protein population will then block at different steps, populate different intermediates, and fold at different rates, giving the appearance of multiple unrelated pathways. A test of the hypothesis matches the two models against extensive kinetic folding results for hen lysozyme which have been widely cited in support of independent parallel pathways. The PPOE model succeeds with fewer fitting constants. The fitted PPOE reaction scheme leads to known folding behavior, whereas the IUP properties are contradicted by experiment. The appearance of a conflict with multipath theoretical models seems to be due to their different focus, namely on multitrack microscopic behavior versus cooperative macroscopic behavior. The integration of three well-documented principles in the PPOE model (cooperative foldons, sequential stabilization, optional errors) provides a unifying explanation for how proteins fold and why they fold in that way. PMID:17322530

  17. Mechanics of invagination and folding: Hybridized instabilities when one soft tissue grows on another

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Tallinen, Tuomas; Biggins, John S.

    2015-08-01

    We address the folding induced by differential growth in soft layered solids via an elementary model that consists of a soft growing neo-Hookean elastic layer adhered to a deep elastic substrate. As the layer-to-substrate modulus ratio is varied from above unity toward zero, we find a first transition from supercritical smooth folding followed by cusping of the valleys to direct subcritical cusped folding, then another to supercritical cusped folding. Beyond threshold, the high-amplitude fold spacing converges to about four layer thicknesses for many modulus ratios. In three dimensions, the instability gives rise to a wide variety of morphologies, including almost degenerate zigzag and triple-junction patterns that can coexist when the layer and substrate are of comparable softness. Our study unifies these results providing understanding for the complex and diverse fold morphologies found in biology, including the zigzag precursors to intestinal villi, and disordered zigzags and triple junctions in mammalian cortex.

  18. A new mechanism for energy conservation technology services

    SciTech Connect

    Yan, Feng

    1996-12-31

    In the ninth-five year plan of China, the socialist market economy model will be developed. In the stage of transferring from planning economy to market economy, the energy conservation technology services industry in China has met new challenges. Over the past ten to fifteen years, there has developed a new mechanism for financing energy efficiency investments in market economies. The process is simple. After inspecting an enterprise or an entity for energy saving opportunities, an Energy Service Company (ESCO) which business aimed at making money will review the recommended energy conservation opportunities with the enterprise or the entity (user) and implement those measures acceptable to the user at no front end cost to the user. The ESCO then guarantees that the energy savings will cover the cost of the capital renovations using the Performance Contracting.

  19. Mechanism-based corrector combination restores ΔF508-CFTR folding and function.

    PubMed

    Okiyoneda, Tsukasa; Veit, Guido; Dekkers, Johanna F; Bagdany, Miklos; Soya, Naoto; Xu, Haijin; Roldan, Ariel; Verkman, Alan S; Kurth, Mark; Simon, Agnes; Hegedus, Tamas; Beekman, Jeffrey M; Lukacs, Gergely L

    2013-07-01

    The most common cystic fibrosis mutation, ΔF508 in nucleotide binding domain 1 (NBD1), impairs cystic fibrosis transmembrane conductance regulator (CFTR)-coupled domain folding, plasma membrane expression, function and stability. VX-809, a promising investigational corrector of ΔF508-CFTR misprocessing, has limited clinical benefit and an incompletely understood mechanism, hampering drug development. Given the effect of second-site suppressor mutations, robust ΔF508-CFTR correction most likely requires stabilization of NBD1 energetics and the interface between membrane-spanning domains (MSDs) and NBD1, which are both established primary conformational defects. Here we elucidate the molecular targets of available correctors: class I stabilizes the NBD1-MSD1 and NBD1-MSD2 interfaces, and class II targets NBD2. Only chemical chaperones, surrogates of class III correctors, stabilize human ΔF508-NBD1. Although VX-809 can correct missense mutations primarily destabilizing the NBD1-MSD1/2 interface, functional plasma membrane expression of ΔF508-CFTR also requires compounds that counteract the NBD1 and NBD2 stability defects in cystic fibrosis bronchial epithelial cells and intestinal organoids. Thus, the combination of structure-guided correctors represents an effective approach for cystic fibrosis therapy. PMID:23666117

  20. Structural insights into a unique cellulase fold and mechanism of cellulose hydrolysis

    PubMed Central

    Brás, Joana L. A.; Cartmell, Alan; Carvalho, Ana Luísa M.; Verzé, Genny; Bayer, Edward A.; Vazana, Yael; Correia, Márcia A. S.; Prates, José A. M.; Ratnaparkhe, Supriya; Boraston, Alisdair B.; Romão, Maria J.; Fontes, Carlos M. G. A.; Gilbert, Harry J.

    2011-01-01

    Clostridium thermocellum is a well-characterized cellulose-degrading microorganism. The genome sequence of C. thermocellum encodes a number of proteins that contain type I dockerin domains, which implies that they are components of the cellulose-degrading apparatus, but display no significant sequence similarity to known plant cell wall–degrading enzymes. Here, we report the biochemical properties and crystal structure of one of these proteins, designated CtCel124. The protein was shown to be an endo-acting cellulase that displays a single displacement mechanism and acts in synergy with Cel48S, the major cellulosomal exo-cellulase. The crystal structure of CtCel124 in complex with two cellotriose molecules, determined to 1.5 Å, displays a superhelical fold in which a constellation of α-helices encircle a central helix that houses the catalytic apparatus. The catalytic acid, Glu96, is located at the C-terminus of the central helix, but there is no candidate catalytic base. The substrate-binding cleft can be divided into two discrete topographical domains in which the bound cellotriose molecules display twisted and linear conformations, respectively, suggesting that the enzyme may target the interface between crystalline and disordered regions of cellulose. PMID:21393568

  1. Mechanism-based corrector combination restores ΔF508-CFTR folding and function

    PubMed Central

    Okiyoneda, Tsukasa; Veit, Guido; Dekkers, Johanna F.; Bagdany, Miklos; Soya, Naoto; Xu, Haijin; Roldan, Ariel; Verkman, Alan S.; Kurth, Mark; Simon, Agnes; Hegedus, Tamas; Beekman, Jeffrey M.; Lukacs, Gergely L.

    2013-01-01

    The most common cystic fibrosis (CF) mutation, ΔF508 in the nucleotide binding domain-1 (NBD1), impairs CFTR coupled-domain folding, plasma membrane (PM) expression, function and stability. VX-809, a promising investigational corrector of ΔF508-CFTR misprocessing, has limited clinical benefit and incompletely understood mechanism, hampering drug development. Based on the effect of second site suppressor mutations, robust ΔF508-CFTR correction likely requires stabilization of NBD1 and the membrane spanning domains (MSDs)-NBD1 interface, both established primary conformational defects. Here, we elucidated the molecular targets of available correctors; class-I stabilizes the NBD1-MSD1/2 interface, class-II targets NBD2, and only chemical chaperones, surrogates of class-III correctors, stabilize the human ΔF508-NBD1. While VX-809 can correct missense mutations primarily destabilizing the NBD1-MSD1/2 interface, functional PM expression of ΔF508-CFTR also requires compounds that counteract the NBD1 and NBD2 stability defects in CF bronchial epithelial cells and intestinal organoids. Thus, structure-guided corrector combination represents an effective approach for CF therapy. PMID:23666117

  2. Modeling the effect of codon translation rates on co-translational protein folding mechanisms of arbitrary complexity

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Caniparoli, Luca; O'Brien, Edward P.

    2015-04-01

    In a cell, the folding of a protein molecule into tertiary structure can begin while it is synthesized by the ribosome. The rate at which individual amino acids are incorporated into the elongating nascent chain has been shown to affect the likelihood that proteins will populate their folded state, indicating that co-translational protein folding is a far from equilibrium process. Developing a theoretical framework to accurately describe this process is, therefore, crucial for advancing our understanding of how proteins acquire their functional conformation in living cells. Current state-of-the-art computational approaches, such as molecular dynamics simulations, are very demanding in terms of the required computer resources, making the simulation of co-translational protein folding difficult. Here, we overcome this limitation by introducing an efficient approach that predicts the effects that variable codon translation rates have on co-translational folding pathways. Our approach is based on Markov chains. By using as an input a relatively small number of molecular dynamics simulations, it allows for the computation of the probability that a nascent protein is in any state as a function of the translation rate of individual codons along a mRNA's open reading frame. Due to its computational efficiency and favorable scalability with the complexity of the folding mechanism, this approach could enable proteome-wide computational studies of the influence of translation dynamics on co-translational folding.

  3. Modeling the effect of codon translation rates on co-translational protein folding mechanisms of arbitrary complexity.

    PubMed

    Caniparoli, Luca; O'Brien, Edward P

    2015-04-14

    In a cell, the folding of a protein molecule into tertiary structure can begin while it is synthesized by the ribosome. The rate at which individual amino acids are incorporated into the elongating nascent chain has been shown to affect the likelihood that proteins will populate their folded state, indicating that co-translational protein folding is a far from equilibrium process. Developing a theoretical framework to accurately describe this process is, therefore, crucial for advancing our understanding of how proteins acquire their functional conformation in living cells. Current state-of-the-art computational approaches, such as molecular dynamics simulations, are very demanding in terms of the required computer resources, making the simulation of co-translational protein folding difficult. Here, we overcome this limitation by introducing an efficient approach that predicts the effects that variable codon translation rates have on co-translational folding pathways. Our approach is based on Markov chains. By using as an input a relatively small number of molecular dynamics simulations, it allows for the computation of the probability that a nascent protein is in any state as a function of the translation rate of individual codons along a mRNA's open reading frame. Due to its computational efficiency and favorable scalability with the complexity of the folding mechanism, this approach could enable proteome-wide computational studies of the influence of translation dynamics on co-translational folding. PMID:25877595

  4. Mechanisms for Rescue of Correctable Folding Defects in CFTRΔF508

    PubMed Central

    Grove, Diane E.; Rosser, Meredith F.N.; Ren, Hong Yu; Naren, Anjaparavanda P.

    2009-01-01

    Premature degradation of CFTRΔF508 causes cystic fibrosis (CF). CFTRΔF508 folding defects are conditional and folding correctors are being developed as CF therapeutics. How the cellular environment impacts CFTRΔF508 folding efficiency and the identity of CFTRΔF508's correctable folding defects is unclear. We report that inactivation of the RMA1 or CHIP ubiquitin ligase permits a pool of CFTRΔF508 to escape the endoplasmic reticulum. Combined RMA1 or CHIP inactivation and Corr-4a treatment enhanced CFTRΔF508 folding to 3–7-fold greater levels than those elicited by Corr-4a. Some, but not all, folding defects in CFTRΔF508 are correctable. CHIP and RMA1 recognize different regions of CFTR and a large pool of nascent CFTRΔF508 is ubiquitinated by RMA1 before Corr-4a action. RMA1 recognizes defects in CFTRΔF508 related to misassembly of a complex that contains MSD1, NBD1, and the R-domain. Corr-4a acts on CFTRΔF508 after MSD2 synthesis and was ineffective at rescue of ΔF508 dependent folding defects in amino-terminal regions. In contrast, misfolding caused by the rare CF-causing mutation V232D in MSD1 was highly correctable by Corr-4a. Overall, correction of folding defects recognized by RMA1 and/or global modulation of ER quality control has the potential to increase CFTRΔF508 folding and provide a therapeutic approach for CF. PMID:19625452

  5. Methods for detecting formation mechanisms and determining a final strain value for different scales of folded structures

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Yakovlev, Fedor L.

    2012-03-01

    Linear folding, developing in fold and thrust belts, is treated as a hierarchic system, at each level of which objects are described by special kinematic models. Geometric parameters of natural folded structures are determined by a combination of various mechanisms incorporated in the model, and a value of finite strain. Several case studies demonstrate how such data enables one to solve structural and geodynamic problems for natural objects of different size. Shortening value of two morphological types of folds is determined based on the geometry of competent layers. Application of the method to analyze the folds of the Vorontsov nappe (Greater Caucasus) determines its gravitational origin. Structural cross-sections though several tectonic zones are subdivided into relatively small domains, the geometry of which, particularly in thin-bedded flysch deposits, making it possible to identify the mechanisms of formation of both local and large structures, and also to reconstruct the pre-folded state of each domain and of the entire cross-sections. By aggregation of tectonic domains into large modules and determination of the value of shortening, we have constructed for the first time a 3D model of the present-day structure of the northwestern Caucasus, which is balanced for the whole sedimentary cover. The geometry of large structures makes it possible to validate geodynamic models.

  6. Conserved mechanism for coordinating replication fork helicase assembly with phosphorylation of the helicase

    PubMed Central

    Bruck, Irina; Kaplan, Daniel L.

    2015-01-01

    Dbf4-dependent kinase (DDK) phosphorylates minichromosome maintenance 2 (Mcm2) during S phase in yeast, and Sld3 recruits cell division cycle 45 (Cdc45) to minichromosome maintenance 2-7 (Mcm2-7). We show here DDK-phosphoryled Mcm2 preferentially interacts with Cdc45 in vivo, and that Sld3 stimulates DDK phosphorylation of Mcm2 by 11-fold. We identified a mutation of the replication initiation factor Sld3, Sld3-m16, that is specifically defective in stimulating DDK phosphorylation of Mcm2. Wild-type expression levels of sld3-m16 result in severe growth and DNA replication defects. Cells expressing sld3-m16 exhibit no detectable Mcm2 phosphorylation in vivo, reduced replication protein A-ChIP signal at an origin, and diminished Go, Ichi, Ni, and San association with Mcm2-7. Treslin, the human homolog of Sld3, stimulates human DDK phosphorylation of human Mcm2 by 15-fold. DDK phosphorylation of human Mcm2 decreases the affinity of Mcm5 for Mcm2, suggesting a potential mechanism for helicase ring opening. These data suggest a conserved mechanism for replication initiation: Sld3/Treslin coordinates Cdc45 recruitment to Mcm2-7 with DDK phosphorylation of Mcm2 during S phase. PMID:26305950

  7. HMMerThread: Detecting Remote, Functional Conserved Domains in Entire Genomes by Combining Relaxed Sequence-Database Searches with Fold Recognition

    PubMed Central

    Bradshaw, Charles Richard; Surendranath, Vineeth; Henschel, Robert; Mueller, Matthias Stefan; Habermann, Bianca Hermine

    2011-01-01

    Conserved domains in proteins are one of the major sources of functional information for experimental design and genome-level annotation. Though search tools for conserved domain databases such as Hidden Markov Models (HMMs) are sensitive in detecting conserved domains in proteins when they share sufficient sequence similarity, they tend to miss more divergent family members, as they lack a reliable statistical framework for the detection of low sequence similarity. We have developed a greatly improved HMMerThread algorithm that can detect remotely conserved domains in highly divergent sequences. HMMerThread combines relaxed conserved domain searches with fold recognition to eliminate false positive, sequence-based identifications. With an accuracy of 90%, our software is able to automatically predict highly divergent members of conserved domain families with an associated 3-dimensional structure. We give additional confidence to our predictions by validation across species. We have run HMMerThread searches on eight proteomes including human and present a rich resource of remotely conserved domains, which adds significantly to the functional annotation of entire proteomes. We find ∼4500 cross-species validated, remotely conserved domain predictions in the human proteome alone. As an example, we find a DNA-binding domain in the C-terminal part of the A-kinase anchor protein 10 (AKAP10), a PKA adaptor that has been implicated in cardiac arrhythmias and premature cardiac death, which upon stress likely translocates from mitochondria to the nucleus/nucleolus. Based on our prediction, we propose that with this HLH-domain, AKAP10 is involved in the transcriptional control of stress response. Further remotely conserved domains we discuss are examples from areas such as sporulation, chromosome segregation and signalling during immune response. The HMMerThread algorithm is able to automatically detect the presence of remotely conserved domains in proteins based on weak

  8. Using D-amino acids to delineate the mechanism of protein folding: Application to Trp-cage

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Culik, Robert M.; Annavarapu, Srinivas; Nanda, Vikas; Gai, Feng

    2013-08-01

    Using the miniprotein Trp-cage as a model, we show that D-amino acids can be used to facilitate the delineation of protein folding mechanism. Specifically, we study the folding-unfolding kinetics of three Trp-cage mutants where the native glycine residue near the C-terminus of the α-helix is replaced by a D-amino acid. A previous study showed that these mutations increase the Trp-cage stability, due to a terminal capping effect. Our results show that the stabilizing effect of D-asparagine and D-glutamine originates almost exclusively from a decrease in the unfolding rate, while the D-alanine mutation results in a similar decrease in the unfolding rate, but it also increases the folding rate. Together, these results support a folding mechanism wherein the α-helix formation in the transition state is nucleated at the N-terminus, whereas those long-range native interactions stabilizing this helix are developed at the downhill side of the folding free energy barrier.

  9. Energy Conservation: An Examination of Energy Conservation Mechanisms As They Relate to School Districts in Region XI.

    ERIC Educational Resources Information Center

    Kerns, Marilyn

    This report attempts to supply information on energy conservation mechanisms that can be employed in schools to the public schools of Minnesota. The report begins by presenting guidelines for developing an energy conservation plan. The two models include the concept of Total Educational Energy Management as developed by the Colorado Department of…

  10. Significance of first-order faults in folding mechanically isotropic layers: evidence from the Sudbury Basin, Canada.

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Clark, Martin; Riller, Ulrich

    2016-04-01

    The Sudbury Basin in Canada is a fold basin demarcated by the Sudbury Igneous Complex (SIC). Folding of the SIC is particularly notable due to its petrographically distinct but mechanically similar layers that are hardly strained when compared to folded strata in other deformed terranes. The Sudbury Basin has three ranges, the North Range, the South Range, and the East Range. The East Range differs from the other ranges by inclosing a remarkably shorter SIC segment with a strong concave curvature. Lacking significant mechanical anisotropy and solid-state strain within the SIC brings to question how the SIC in the East Range acquired its curvature. To address this question, we analyzed the orientation of prominent km-scale faults and their slip vectors. These faults transect the SIC at low angles and mimic its plan view curvature suggesting that the faults were folded along with the SIC. We have developed a G.I.S.-based workflow to address this problem that harnesses high-resolution LiDAR data to generate near surface fault geometries, and combines these geometries with local fault-slip inversions of slickensides to identify slip vectors of prominent curved faults. Analysis of slip vectors along curved faults yields clusters of slip vectors with normal and reverse slip motion in the northern and southern fault segments, respectively. The variation in slip vectors is interpreted to be non-primary and thus shows a temporal relationship between faulting and folding of the SIC. Therefore, prominent curved faults in the East Range must have occurred as a pre-folding brittle response to horizontal shortening. These faults later assumed the role of mechanical anisotropic elements necessary for folding of the SIC layers to occur. This interpretation is corroborated by two sets of principal strain axes inferred from fault-slip inversions. The first set is characterized by its principal axis of shortening oriented NW-SE, comparable in orientation to regional shortening as

  11. New hypotheses derived from the structure of a flaviviral Xrn1-resistant RNA: Conservation, folding, and host adaptation

    PubMed Central

    Kieft, Jeffrey S; Rabe, Jennifer L; Chapman, Erich G

    2015-01-01

    Arthropod-borne flaviviruses (FVs) are a growing world-wide health threat whose incidence and range are increasing. The pathogenicity and cytopathicity of these single-stranded RNA viruses are influenced by viral subgenomic non-protein-coding RNAs (sfRNAs) that the viruses produce to high levels during infection. To generate sfRNAs the virus co-opts the action of the abundant cellular exonuclease Xrn1, which is part of the cell's normal RNA turnover machinery. This exploitation of the cellular machinery is enabled by discrete, highly structured, Xrn1-resistant RNA elements (xrRNAs) in the 3′UTR that interact with Xrn1 to halt processive 5′ to 3′ decay of the viral genomic RNA. We recently solved the crystal structure of a functional xrRNA, revealing a novel fold that provides a mechanistic model for Xrn1 resistance. Continued analysis and interpretation of the structure reveals that the tertiary contacts that knit the xrRNA fold together are shared by a wide variety of arthropod-borne FVs, conferring robust Xrn1 resistance in all tested. However, there is some variability in the structures that correlates with unexplained patterns in the viral 3′ UTRs. Finally, examination of these structures and their behavior in the context of viral infection leads to a new hypothesis linking RNA tertiary structure, overall 3′ UTR architecture, sfRNA production, and host adaptation. PMID:26399159

  12. New hypotheses derived from the structure of a flaviviral Xrn1-resistant RNA: Conservation, folding, and host adaptation.

    PubMed

    Kieft, Jeffrey S; Rabe, Jennifer L; Chapman, Erich G

    2015-01-01

    Arthropod-borne flaviviruses (FVs) are a growing world-wide health threat whose incidence and range are increasing. The pathogenicity and cytopathicity of these single-stranded RNA viruses are influenced by viral subgenomic non-protein-coding RNAs (sfRNAs) that the viruses produce to high levels during infection. To generate sfRNAs the virus co-opts the action of the abundant cellular exonuclease Xrn1, which is part of the cell's normal RNA turnover machinery. This exploitation of the cellular machinery is enabled by discrete, highly structured, Xrn1-resistant RNA elements (xrRNAs) in the 3'UTR that interact with Xrn1 to halt processive 5' to 3' decay of the viral genomic RNA. We recently solved the crystal structure of a functional xrRNA, revealing a novel fold that provides a mechanistic model for Xrn1 resistance. Continued analysis and interpretation of the structure reveals that the tertiary contacts that knit the xrRNA fold together are shared by a wide variety of arthropod-borne FVs, conferring robust Xrn1 resistance in all tested. However, there is some variability in the structures that correlates with unexplained patterns in the viral 3' UTRs. Finally, examination of these structures and their behavior in the context of viral infection leads to a new hypothesis linking RNA tertiary structure, overall 3' UTR architecture, sfRNA production, and host adaptation. PMID:26399159

  13. Gauge transformations and conserved quantities in classical and quantum mechanics

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Berche, Bertrand; Malterre, Daniel; Medina, Ernesto

    2016-08-01

    We are taught that gauge transformations in classical and quantum mechanics do not change the physics of the problem. Nevertheless, here we discuss three broad scenarios where under gauge transformations: (i) conservation laws are not preserved in the usual manner; (ii) non-gauge-invariant quantities can be associated with physical observables; and (iii) there are changes in the physical boundary conditions of the wave function that render it non-single-valued. We give worked examples that illustrate these points, in contrast to general opinions from classic texts. We also give a historical perspective on the development of Abelian gauge theory in relation to our particular points. Our aim is to provide a discussion of these issues at the graduate level.

  14. Conservation of information and the foundations of quantum mechanics

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Chiribella, Giulio; Scandolo, Carlo Maria

    2015-05-01

    We review a recent approach to the foundations of quantum mechanics inspired by quantum information theory [1, 2]. The approach is based on a general framework, which allows one to address a large class of physical theories which share basic information-theoretic features. We first illustrate two very primitive features, expressed by the axioms of causality and purity-preservation, which are satisfied by both classical and quantum theory. We then discuss the axiom of purification, which expresses a strong version of the Conservation of Information and captures the core of a vast number of protocols in quantum information. Purification is a highly non-classical feature and leads directly to the emergence of entanglement at the purely conceptual level, without any reference to the superposition principle. Supplemented by a few additional requirements, satisfied by classical and quantum theory, it provides a complete axiomatic characterization of quantum theory for finite dimensional systems.

  15. Molecular mechanism of energy conservation in polysulfide respiration

    PubMed Central

    Jormakka, Mika; Yokoyama, Ken; Yano, Takahiro; Tamakoshi, Masatada; Akimoto, Satoru; Shimamura, Tatsuro; Curmi, Paul; Iwata, So

    2010-01-01

    Bacterial polysulfide reductase (PsrABC) is an integral membrane protein complex responsible for quinone coupled reduction of polysulfide, a process important in extreme environments such as deep-sea vents and hot springs. We determined the structure of polysulfide reductase from Thermus thermophilus at 2.4 Å resolution, revealing how the PsrA subunit recognizes and reduces its unique poly anionic substrate. The integral membrane subunit PsrC was characterized using the natural substrate menaquinone-7 and inhibitors, providing a comprehensive representation of a quinone binding site and revealing the presence of a water filled cavity connecting the quinone binding site on the periplasmic side to the cytoplasm. These results suggest that polysulfide reductase could be a key energy-conserving enzyme of the T. thermophilus respiratory chain, utilizing polysulfide as the terminal electron acceptor and pumping protons across the membrane via a previously unknown mechanism. PMID:18536726

  16. Statistical mechanics of a correlated energy landscape model for protein folding funnels

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Plotkin, Steven S.; Wang, Jin; Wolynes, Peter G.

    1997-02-01

    In heteropolymers, energetic correlations exist due to polymeric constraints and the locality of interactions. Pair correlations in conjunction with the a priori specification of the existence of a particularly low energy state provide a method of introducing the aspect of minimal frustration to the energy landscapes of random heteropolymers. The resulting funneled landscape exhibits both a phase transition from a molten globule to a folded state, and the heteropolymeric glass transition in the globular state. We model the folding transition in the self-averaging regime, which together with a simple theory of collapse allows us to depict folding as a double-well free energy surface in terms of suitable reaction coordinates. Observed trends in barrier positions and heights with protein sequence length and thermodynamic conditions are discussed within the context of the model. We also discuss the new physics which arises from the introduction of explicitly cooperative many-body interactions, as might arise from sidechain packing and nonadditive hydrophobic forces.

  17. Architecture and Folding Mechanism of the Azoarcus Group I Pre-tRNA

    SciTech Connect

    Rangan,P.; Masquida, B.; Westhof, E.; Woodson, S.

    2004-01-01

    Self-splicing RNAs must evolve to function in their specific exon context. The conformation of a group I pre-tRNA{sup ile} from the bacterium Azoarcus was probed by ribonuclease T1 and hydroxyl radical cleavage, and by native gel electrophoresis. Biochemical data and three-dimensional models of the pre-tRNA showed that the tRNA is folded, and that the tRNA and intron sequences form separate tertiary domains. Models of the active site before steps 1 and 2 of the splicing reaction predict that exchange of the external G-cofactor and the 3{prime}-terminal G is accomplished by a slight conformational change in P9.0 of the Azoarcus group I intron. Kinetic assays showed that the pre-tRNA folds in minutes, much more slowly than the intron alone. The dependence of the folding kinetics on Mg{sup 2+} and the concentration of urea, and RNase T1 experiments showed that formation of native pre-tRNA is delayed by misfolding of P3-P9, including mispairing between residues in P9 and the tRNA. Thus, although the intron and tRNA sequences form separate domains in the native pre-tRNA, their folding is coupled via metastable non-native base-pairs. This could help prevent premature processing of the 5{prime} and 3{prime} ends of unspliced pre-tRNA.

  18. Three-dimensional geometry, strain rates and basement deformation mechanisms of thrust-bend folding

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Wibberley, Christopher A. J.

    1997-03-01

    Models for thrust-bend folding of an isotropic medium are used to predict initial basement thrust sheet geometries and sub-surface thrust fault shapes from final basement thrust sheet structure. Predicted strains and strain rates from these models are compared with data on deformation fabrics in an example of a basement thrustbend fold in order to characterise the deformation response to thrust-bend folding. The Glencoul thrust sheet in the Moine Thrust Zone of north-west Scotland is restored to an initial thrust sheet geometry. Spatial and orientation distribution data of syn-emplacement fractures and cataclastic fault zones from within the Glencoul thrust sheet are then compared with the strain and strain rate histories predicted by thrust-bend folding models. A different set of cataclastic fault seams is demonstrated to have been generated at each frontal thrust bend. Cataclastic failure is restricted to portions of the thrust sheet that have moved over frontal bends with smaller radii of curvature. From model thrust-bend geometries and an assumed slip rate of 1 x 10 -10 ms -1, estimated minimum (critical) strain rates required for fracture failure of the Lewisian basement are 10 -11 to 10 -14 s -1 for shear strain rates and 10 -12 to 10 -15 s -1 for extensional strain rates.

  19. Modelling "reality" in tectonics: Simulation of the mechanical evolution of the Jura Mountains-Molasse Basin system, and routes to forward-inverse modelling of fold thrust belts.

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Hindle, David; Kley, Jonas

    2016-04-01

    The ultimate validation of any numerical model of any geological process comes when it can accurately forward model a case study from the geological record. However, as the example of the Jura-Molasse fold thrust belt demonstrates, geological information on even the most basic aspects of the present day state of such systems is highly incomplete and usually known only with large uncertainties. Fold thrust-belts are studied and understood by geologists in an iterative process of constructing their subsurface geometries and structures (folds, faults, bedding etc) based on limited subsurface information from boreholes, tunnels or seismic data where available, and surface information on outcrops of different layers and their dips. This data is usually processed through geometric models which involve conservation of line length of different beds over the length of an entire cross section. Constructing such sections is the art of cross section balancing. A balanced cross section can be easily restored to its pre-deformation state, assuming (usually) originally horizontal bedding to remove the effects of folding and faulting. Such a pre-deformation state can then form an initial condition for a forward mechanical model of the section. A mechanical model introduces new parameters into the system such as rock elasticity, cohesion, and frictional properties. However, a forward mechanical model can also potentially show the continuous evolution of a fold thrust belt, including dynamic quantities like stress. Moreover, a forward mechanical model, if correct in most aspects, should match in its final state, the present day geological cross section it is simulating. However, when attempting to achieve a match between geometric and mechanical models, it becomes clear that many more aspects of the geodynamic history of a fold thrust belt have to be taken into account. Erosion of the uppermost layers of an evolving thrust belt is the most obvious one of these. This can potentially

  20. Conserved mechanism of tRNA splicing in eukaryotes.

    PubMed Central

    Zillmann, M; Gorovsky, M A; Phizicky, E M

    1991-01-01

    The ligation steps of tRNA splicing in yeast and vertebrate cells have been thought to proceed by fundamentally different mechanisms. Ligation in yeast cells occurs by incorporation of an exogenous phosphate from ATP into the splice junction, with concomitant formation of a 2' phosphate at the 5' junction nucleotide. This phosphate is removed in a subsequent step which, in vitro, is catalyzed by an NAD-dependent dephosphorylating activity. In contrast, tRNA ligation in vertebrates has been reported to occur without incorporation of exogenous phosphate or formation of a 2' phosphate. We demonstrate in this study the existence of a yeast tRNA ligase-like activity in HeLa cells. Furthermore, in extracts from these cells, the entire yeastlike tRNA splicing machinery is intact, including that for cleavage, ligation, and removal of the 2' phosphate in an NAD-dependent fashion to give mature tRNA. These results argue that the mechanism of tRNA splicing is conserved among eukaryotes. Images PMID:1922054

  1. Crystal Structures of Two Novel Dye-Decolorizing Peroxidases Reveal a Beta-Bar Fold With a Conserved Heme-Binding Motif

    SciTech Connect

    Zubieta, C.; Krishna, S.S.; Kapoor, M.; Kozbial, P.; McMullan, D.; Axelrod, H.L.; Miller, M.D.; Abdubek, P.; Ambing, E.; Astakhova, T.; Carlton, D.; Chiu, H.J.; Clayton, T.; Deller, M.C.; Duan, L.; Elsliger, M.A.; Feuerhelm, J.; Grzechnik, S.K.; Hale, J.; Hampton, E.; Han, G.W.; /JCSG /SLAC, SSRL /Burnham Inst. Med. Res. /UC, San Diego /Scripps Res. Inst. /Novartis Res. Found.

    2007-10-31

    BtDyP from Bacteroides thetaiotaomicron (strain VPI-5482) and TyrA from Shewanella oneidensis are dye-decolorizing peroxidases (DyPs), members of a new family of heme-dependent peroxidases recently identified in fungi and bacteria. Here, we report the crystal structures of BtDyP and TyrA at 1.6 and 2.7 Angstroms, respectively. BtDyP assembles into a hexamer, while TyrA assembles into a dimer; the dimerization interface is conserved between the two proteins. Each monomer exhibits a two-domain, {alpha}+{beta} ferredoxin-like fold. A site for heme binding was identified computationally, and modeling of a heme into the proposed active site allowed for identification of residues likely to be functionally important. Structural and sequence comparisons with other DyPs demonstrate a conservation of putative heme-binding residues, including an absolutely conserved histidine. Isothermal titration calorimetry experiments confirm heme binding, but with a stoichiometry of 0.3:1 (heme:protein).

  2. RNA under tension: Folding Landscapes, Kinetic partitioning Mechanism, and Molecular Tensegrity.

    PubMed

    Lin, Jong-Chin; Hyeon, Changbong; Thirumalai, D

    2012-11-19

    Non-coding RNA sequences play a great role in controlling a number of cellular functions, thus raising the need to understand their complex conformational dynamics in quantitative detail. In this perspective, we first show that single molecule pulling when combined with with theory and simulations can be used to quantitatively explore the folding landscape of nucleic acid hairpins, and riboswitches with tertiary interactions. Applications to riboswitches, which are non-coding RNA elements that control gene expression by undergoing dynamical conformational changes in response to binding of metabolites, lead to an organization principle that assembly of RNA is determined by the stability of isolated helices. We also point out the limitations of single molecule pulling experiments, with molecular extension as the only accessible parameter, in extracting key parameters of the folding landscapes of RNA molecules. PMID:23336034

  3. Structural fold, conservation and Fe(II) binding of the intracellular domain of prokaryote FeoB

    SciTech Connect

    Hung, Kuo-Wei; Chang, Yi-Wei; Eng, Edward T.; Chen, Jai-Hui; Chen, Yi-Chung; Sun, Yuh-Ju; Hsiao, Chwan-Deng; Dong, Gang; Spasov, Krasimir A.; Unger, Vinzenz M.; Huang, Tai-huang

    2010-09-17

    FeoB is a G-protein coupled membrane protein essential for Fe(II) uptake in prokaryotes. Here, we report the crystal structures of the intracellular domain of FeoB (NFeoB) from Klebsiella pneumoniae (KpNFeoB) and Pyrococcus furiosus (PfNFeoB) with and without bound ligands. In the structures, a canonical G-protein domain (G domain) is followed by a helical bundle domain (S-domain), which despite its lack of sequence similarity between species is structurally conserved. In the nucleotide-free state, the G-domain's two switch regions point away from the binding site. This gives rise to an open binding pocket whose shallowness is likely to be responsible for the low nucleotide-binding affinity. Nucleotide binding induced significant conformational changes in the G5 motif which in the case of GMPPNP binding was accompanied by destabilization of the switch I region. In addition to the structural data, we demonstrate that Fe(II)-induced foot printing cleaves the protein close to a putative Fe(II)-binding site at the tip of switch I, and we identify functionally important regions within the S-domain. Moreover, we show that NFeoB exists as a monomer in solution, and that its two constituent domains can undergo large conformational changes. The data show that the S-domain plays important roles in FeoB function.

  4. NMR Structure of Conserved Eukaryotic Protein ZK652.3 from C. elegans: a Ubiquitin-like Fold

    SciTech Connect

    Cort, John R. ); Chiang, Yiwen; Zheng, Deyou; Kennedy, Michael A. ); Montelione, Gaetano

    2002-09-01

    Structural proteomics aims to provide one or more representative 3D structures for every structural domain family in nature. As part of an international effort in structural proteomics, the Northeast Structural Genomics Consortium has targeted clusters of strongly conserved eukaryotic protein families for structural and functional analysis. On this basis, protein ZK652.3 (nesg WR41 / YOY3{_}CAEEL / Swiss-Prot P34661 / gi|17557033) from Caenorhabditis elegans was selected for structure determination. Expression of the ZK652.3 gene has been observed in a transcriptional profile of C. elegans genes, where it was one of a cluster of 89 genes whose expression levels co-varied during development1. The biochemical function of this protein is presently unknown. Sequencing of cDNA libraries shows that homologues of ZK652.3 occur widely in vertebrates and plants (Fig. 1). However, ZK652.3 homologues are conspicuously absent from the yeast and Drosophila genomes. Here we describe the three-dimensional structure of ZK652.3 determined by NMR spectroscopy and discuss structural similarities with other proteins which provide clues to potential biochemical functions.

  5. Navigating ligand protein binding free energy landscapes: universality and diversity of protein folding and molecular recognition mechanisms

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Verkhivker, Gennady M.; Rejto, Paul A.; Bouzida, Djamal; Arthurs, Sandra; Colson, Anthony B.; Freer, Stephan T.; Gehlhaar, Daniel K.; Larson, Veda; Luty, Brock A.; Marrone, Tami; Rose, Peter W.

    2001-03-01

    Thermodynamic and kinetic aspects of ligand-protein binding are studied for the methotrexate-dihydrofolate reductase system from the binding free energy profile constructed as a function of the order parameter. Thermodynamic stability of the native complex and a cooperative transition to the unique native structure suggest the nucleation kinetic mechanism at the equilibrium transition temperature. Structural properties of the transition state ensemble and the ensemble of nucleation conformations are determined by kinetic simulations of the transmission coefficient and ligand-protein association pathways. Structural analysis of the transition states and the nucleation conformations reconciles different views on the nucleation mechanism in protein folding.

  6. Analysis of repeat-protein folding using nearest-neighbor statistical mechanical models

    PubMed Central

    Aksel, Tural; Barrick, Doug

    2010-01-01

    The linear “Ising” model, which has been around for nearly a century, treats the behavior of linear arrays of repetitive, interacting subunits. Linear “repeat-proteins” have only been described in the last decade or so, and their folding energies have only been characterized very recently. Owing to their repetitive structures, linear repeat-proteins are particularly well suited for analysis by the nearest-neighbor Ising formalism. After briefly describing the historical origins and applications of the Ising model to biopolymers, and introducing repeat protein structure, this chapter will focus on the application of the linear Ising model to repeat proteins. When applied to homopolymers, the model can be represented and applied in a fairly simplified form. When applied to heteropolymers, where differences in energies among individual subunits (i.e. repeats) must be included, some (but not all) of this simplicity is lost. Derivations of the linear Ising model for both homopolymer and heteropolymer repeat-proteins will be presented. With the increased complexity required for analysis of heteropolymeric repeat proteins, the ability to resolve different energy terms from experimental data can be compromised. Thus, a simple matrix approach will be developed to help inform on the degree to which different thermodynamic parameters can be extracted from a particular set of unfolding curves. Finally, we will describe the application of these models to analyze repeat-protein folding equilibria, focusing on simplified repeat proteins based on “consensus” sequence information. PMID:19289204

  7. Role of folded anisotropic fabric in the failure mode of gneiss: new insights from mechanical, microseismic and microstructural laboratory data

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Agliardi, Federico; Vinciguerra, Sergio; Dobbs, Marcus R.; Zanchetta, Stefano

    2015-04-01

    Fabric anisotropy is a key control of the mechanical behaviour of rocks in a variety of geological settings and on different timescales. However, the effects of inherited, tectonically folded anisotropic fabrics on the brittle strength and failure mode of foliated metamorphic rocks is yet to be fully understood. Data from laboratory uniaxial compression tests on folded gneiss (Agliardi et al., 2014, Tectonophysics) recently showed that the brittle failure mode of this rock type depends on the arrangement of two distinct anisotropies (i.e. foliation and fold axial plane anisotropy), and that rock strength correlates with failure mode. Here we investigate the effects of confining pressure on this behaviour by performing triaxial compression experiments with acoustic emission (AE) monitoring, and analyse resulting fracture mechanisms and their microfabric controls using high resolution microanalysis techniques. We tested the Monte Canale Gneiss (Austroalpine Bernina nappe, Central Italian Alps), characterized by low phyllosilicate content, compositional layering folded at the cm-scale, and absence of a well-developed axial plane foliation. We used a servo-controlled hydraulic loading system to test 19 air-dry cylindrical specimens (diameter: 54 mm) that were characterized both in terms of fold geometry and orientation of foliation and fold axial planes to the axial load direction. We instrumented the specimens with direct contact axial and circumferential strain gauges. We performed tests at confining pressures of 40 MPa and constant axial strain rates of 5*10-6 s-1, measuring acoustic emissions and P- and S-wave velocities by three wideband (350-1000 kHz) piezoelectric transceivers with 40 dB preamps, mounted in the compression platens. We carried out post-failure microscale observation of fracture mechanisms, microcrack patterns and related fabric controls on resin-impregnated samples, using X-ray MicroCT (resolution: 9 μm), optical microscopy and SEM. Samples

  8. Conserved Mechanisms of Tumorigenesis in the Drosophila Adult Midgut

    PubMed Central

    Martorell, Òscar; Merlos-Suárez, Anna; Campbell, Kyra; Barriga, Francisco M.; Christov, Christo P.; Miguel-Aliaga, Irene; Batlle, Eduard; Casanova, Jordi; Casali, Andreu

    2014-01-01

    Whereas the series of genetic events leading to colorectal cancer (CRC) have been well established, the precise functions that these alterations play in tumor progression and how they disrupt intestinal homeostasis remain poorly characterized. Activation of the Wnt/Wg signaling pathway by a mutation in the gene APC is the most common trigger for CRC, inducing benign lesions that progress to carcinomas due to the accumulation of other genetic alterations. Among those, Ras mutations drive tumour progression in CRC, as well as in most epithelial cancers. As mammalian and Drosophila's intestines share many similarities, we decided to explore the alterations induced in the Drosophila midgut by the combined activation of the Wnt signaling pathway with gain of function of Ras signaling in the intestinal stem cells. Here we show that compound Apc-Ras clones, but not clones bearing the individual mutations, expand as aggressive intestinal tumor-like outgrowths. These lesions reproduce many of the human CRC hallmarks such as increased proliferation, blockade of cell differentiation and cell polarity and disrupted organ architecture. This process is followed by expression of tumoral markers present in human lesions. Finally, a metabolic behavioral assay shows that these flies suffer a progressive deterioration in intestinal homeostasis, providing a simple readout that could be used in screens for tumor modifiers or therapeutic compounds. Taken together, our results illustrate the conservation of the mechanisms of CRC tumorigenesis in Drosophila, providing an excellent model system to unravel the events that, upon mutation in Apc and Ras, lead to CRC initiation and progression. PMID:24516653

  9. Illustrating some implications of the conservation laws in relativistic mechanics

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Boyer, Timothy H.

    2009-06-01

    The conservation laws of nonrelativistic and relativistic systems are reviewed and some simple illustrations are provided for the restrictive nature of the relativistic conservation law involving the center of energy compared to the nonrelativistic conservation law for the center of mass. Extension of the nonrelativistic interaction of particles through a potential to a system that is Lorentz-invariant through order v2/c2 is found to require new velocity- and acceleration-dependent forces that are suggestive of a field theory where the no-interaction theorem of Currie, Jordan, and Sudershan does not hold.

  10. Folding of proteins with diverse folds.

    PubMed

    Mohanty, Sandipan; Hansmann, Ulrich H E

    2006-11-15

    Using parallel tempering simulations with high statistics, we investigate the folding and thermodynamic properties of three small proteins with distinct native folds: the all-helical 1RIJ, the all-sheet beta3s, and BBA5, which has a mixed helix-sheet fold. In all three cases, simulations with our energy function find the native structures as global minima in free energy at experimentally relevant temperatures. However, the folding process strongly differs for the three molecules, indicating that the folding mechanism is correlated with the form of the native structure. PMID:16950845

  11. Conservation.

    ERIC Educational Resources Information Center

    National Audubon Society, New York, NY.

    This set of teaching aids consists of seven Audubon Nature Bulletins, providing the teacher and student with informational reading on various topics in conservation. The bulletins have these titles: Plants as Makers of Soil, Water Pollution Control, The Ground Water Table, Conservation--To Keep This Earth Habitable, Our Threatened Air Supply,…

  12. Self-oscillating Vocal Fold Model Mechanics: Healthy, Diseased, and Aging

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Hiubler, Elizabeth P.; Pollok, Lucas F. E.; Apostoli, Adam G.; Hancock, Adrienne B.; Plesniak, Michael W.

    2014-11-01

    Voice disorders have been estimated to have a substantial economic impact of 2.5 billion annually. Approximately 30% of people will suffer from a voice disorder at some point in their lives. Life-sized, self-oscillating, synthetic vocal fold (VF) models are fabricated to exhibit material properties representative of human VFs. These models are created both with and without a polyp-like structure, a pathology that has been shown to produce rich viscous flow structures not normally observed for healthy VFs during normal phonation. Pressure measurements are acquired upstream of the VFs and high-speed images are captured at varying flow rates during VF oscillation to facilitate an understanding of the characteristics of healthy and diseased VFs. The images are analyzed using a videokymography line-scan technique. Clinically-relevant parameters calculated from the volume-velocity output of a circumferentially-vented mask (Rothenberg mask) are compared to human data collected from two groups of males aged 18-30 and 60-80. This study extends the use of synthetic VF models by assessing their ability to replicate behaviors observed in human subject data to advance a means of investigating changes associated with normal, pathological, and the aging voice. Supported by the GWU Institute for Biomedical Engineering (GWIBE) and GWU Center for Biomimetics and Bioinspired Engineering (COBRE).

  13. Divalent Metal Ion-Induced Folding Mechanism of RNase H1 from Extreme Halophilic Archaeon Halobacterium sp. NRC-1

    PubMed Central

    Tannous, Elias; Kanaya, Shigenori

    2014-01-01

    RNase H1 from Halobacterium sp. NRC-1 (Halo-RNase H1) is characterized by the abundance of acidic residues on the surface, including bi/quad-aspartate site residues. Halo-RNase H1 exists in partially folded (I) and native (N) states in low-salt and high-salt conditions respectively. Its folding is also induced by divalent metal ions. To understand this unique folding mechanism of Halo-RNase H1, the active site mutant (2A-RNase H1), the bi/quad-aspartate site mutant (6A-RNase H1), and the mutant at both sites (8A-RNase H1) were constructed. The far-UV CD spectra of these mutants suggest that 2A-RNase H1 mainly exists in the I state, 6A-RNase H1 exists both in the I and N states, and 8A-RNase H1 mainly exists in the N state in a low salt-condition. These results suggest that folding of Halo-RNase H1 is induced by binding of divalent metal ions to the bi/quad-aspartate site. To examine whether metal-induced folding is unique to Halo-RNase H1, RNase H2 from the same organism (Halo-RNase H2) was overproduced and purified. Halo-RNase H2 exists in the I and N states in low-salt and high-salt conditions respectively, as does Halo-RNase H1. However, this protein exists in the I state even in the presence of divalent metal ions. Halo-RNase H2 exhibits junction ribonuclease activity only in a high-salt condition. A tertiary model of this protein suggests that this protein does not have a quad-aspartate site. We propose that folding of Halo-RNase H1 is induced by binding of divalent metal ion to the quad-aspartate site in a low-salt condition. PMID:25268753

  14. Mechanical benefits of conservative restoration for dental fissure caries.

    PubMed

    Zhang, Zhongpu; Zheng, Keke; Li, Eric; Li, Wei; Li, Qing; Swain, Michael V

    2016-01-01

    The principle of minimal intervention dentistry (MID) is to limit removal of carious tooth tissue while maximizing its repair and survival potential. The objective of this study is to explore the fracture resistance of a permanent molar tooth with a fissure carious lesion along with three clinical restoration procedures, namely one traditional and two conservative approaches, based upon MID. The traditional restoration employs extensive surgical removal of enamel and dentine about the cavity to eliminate potential risk of further caries development, while conservative method #1 removes significantly less enamel and infected dentine, and conservative method #2 only restores the overhanging enamel above the cavity and leaves the infected and affected dentine as it was. An extended finite element method (XFEM) is adopted here to analyze the fracture behaviors of both two-dimensional (2D) and three-dimensional (3D) modeling of these four different scenarios. It was found that the two conservative methods exhibited better fracture resistance than the traditional restorative method. Although conservative method #2 has less fracture resistance than method #1, it had significantly superior fracture resistance compared to other restorations. More important, after cavity sealing it may potentially enhance the opportunity for remineralization and improved loading bearing capacity and fracture resistance. PMID:26298801

  15. Structural geometry, strain distribution, and mechanical evolution of eastern Umtanum Ridge and a comparison with other selected localities within Yakima fold structures, south-central Washington

    SciTech Connect

    Price, E.H.

    1982-01-01

    The Yakima fold system of south-central Washington and north-central Oregon is a series of megascopic anticlinal ridge of multilayered basalt. Cross-sectional strain analyses were performed at five localities within three anticlines. The analyses show that the strain is consistent both laterally along a fold and within different folds. Folding strain is localized layer-internal faulting, extensive shattering, and limited layer-parallel faulting. Most strain is cataclastic, but glassy flow tops appear to have been more ductile. The strain distributions and structural geometries accord well with a flexural flow buckle model; however, the internal cataclastic flow is not inherently penetrative and limited flexural slip has occurred. This fold model suggests that most strain in the fold is by simple shear and it took place above the topographic surface of adjacent synclinal valleys. Large reverse faults associated with the anticlines are interpreted to be folding strain required by the concentric folding and their displacement is interpreted to have reached the surface late in the folding process. Therefore, the observed strain and its distribution are interpreted to be not directly the result of regional plateau shortening, but of local stresses and resultant strains related to fold geometry. A mechanical analysis of the Umtanum structure termination geometry, combined with slickenside striae movement directions from the study areas suggests that the Palouse slope has behaved as a rigid buttress around which the basalt has rotated clockwise into the folds from the southeast. Compression-box clay modeling of the Yakima fold system within the Pasco Basin shows that the buttress edge orientations control the localization and orientations of buckle folds. Fold orientations and three-dimensional shapes remarkably resembling the Yakima fold system in the Pasco Basin were produced under north-south compression.

  16. Folding mechanism of reduced cytochrome c: Equilibrium and kinetic properties in the presence of carbon monoxide

    PubMed Central

    Latypov, Ramil F.; Maki, Kosuke; Cheng, Hong; Luck, Stanley D.; Roder, Heinrich

    2008-01-01

    Despite close structural similarity, the ferric and ferrous forms of cytochrome c (cyt c) differ greatly in terms of their ligand binding properties, stability, folding and dynamics. The reduced heme iron binds diatomic ligands such as CO only under destabilizing conditions that promote weakening or disruption of the native methionine-iron linkage. This makes CO a useful conformational probe for detecting partially structured states that cannot be observed in the absence of endogenous ligands. Heme absorbance, circular dichroism and NMR were used to characterize the denaturant-induced unfolding equilibrium of Fe2+ cyt c in the presence and absence of CO. In addition to the native state (N), which does not bind CO, and the unfolded CO-complex (U-CO), a structurally distinct CO-bound form (M-CO) accumulates to high levels (~75% of the population) at intermediate guanidine hydrochloride concentrations. Comparison of the unfolding transition for different conformational probes reveals that M-CO is a compact state containing a native-like helical core and regions of local disorder in the segment containing the native Met80 ligand and adjacent loops. Kinetic measurements of CO binding and dissociation under native, partially denaturing and fully unfolded conditions indicate that a state, M, that is structurally analogous to M-CO is populated even in the absence of CO. The binding energy of the CO ligand lowers the free energy of this high-energy state to such an extent that it accumulates even under mildly denaturing equilibrium conditions. The thermodynamic and kinetic parameters obtained in this study provide a fully self-consistent description of the linked unfolding/CO-binding equilibria of reduced cyt c. PMID:18761351

  17. ANALYSIS OF FLOW-STRUCTURE COUPLING IN A MECHANICAL MODEL OF THE VOCAL FOLDS AND THE SUBGLOTTAL SYSTEM

    PubMed Central

    Howe, M. S.; McGowan, R. S.

    2009-01-01

    An analysis is made of the nonlinear interactions between flow in the subglottal vocal tract and glottis, sound waves in the subglottal system and a mechanical model of the vocal folds. The mean flow through the system is produced by a nominally steady contraction of the lungs, and mechanical experiments frequently involve a ‘lung cavity’ coupled to an experimental subglottal tube of arbitrary or ill-defined effective length L, on the basis that the actual value of L has little or no influence on excitation of the vocal folds. A simple, self-exciting single mass mathematical model of the vocal folds is used to investigate the sound generated within the subglottal domain and the unsteady volume flux from the glottis for experiments where it is required to suppress feedback of sound from the supraglottal vocal tract. In experiments where the assumed absorption of sound within the sponge-like interior of the lungs is small, the influence of changes in L can be very significant: when the subglottal tube behaves as an open-ended resonator (when L is as large as half the acoustic wavelength) there is predicted to be a mild increase in volume flux magnitude and a small change in waveform. However, the strong appearance of second harmonics of the acoustic field is predicted at intermediate lengths, when L is roughly one quarter of the acoustic wavelength. In cases of large lung damping, however, only modest changes in the volume flux are predicted to occur with variations in L. PMID:20161450

  18. The role of a conserved acidic residue in calcium-dependent protein folding for a low density lipoprotein (LDL)-A module: implications in structure and function for the LDL receptor superfamily.

    PubMed

    Guo, Ying; Yu, Xuemei; Rihani, Kayla; Wang, Qing-Yin; Rong, Lijun

    2004-04-16

    One common feature of the more than 1,000 complement-type repeats (or low density lipoprotein (LDL)-A modules) found in LDL receptor and the other members of the LDL receptor superfamily is a cluster of five highly conserved acidic residues in the C-terminal region, DXXXDXXDXXDE. However, the role of the third conserved aspartate of these LDL-A modules in protein folding and ligand recognition has not been elucidated. In this report, using a model LDL-A module and several experimental approaches, we demonstrate that this acidic residue, like the other four conserved acidic residues, is involved in calcium-dependent protein folding. These results suggest an alternative calcium coordination conformation for the LDL-A modules. The proposed model provides a plausible explanation for the conservation of this acidic residue among the LDL-A modules. Furthermore, the model can explain why mutations of this residue in human LDL receptor cause familial hypercholesterolemia. PMID:14749324

  19. The cross-road between the mechanisms of protein folding and aggregation; study of human stefin B and its H75W mutant.

    PubMed

    Smajlović, Aida; Berbić, Selma; Žerovnik, Eva

    2011-11-18

    The role of the aromatic residue at site 75 to protein stability, the mechanism of folding and the mechanism of amyloid-fibril formation were investigated for the human stefin B variant (bearing Y at site 31) and its point mutation H75W. With an aim to reveal the conformation at the cross-road between folding and aggregation, first, the kinetics of folding and oligomer formation by human stefin B(Y31) variant were studied. It was found to fold in three kinetic phases at pH 4.8 and 10% TFE; the pH and solvent conditions that transform the protein into amyloid fibrils at longer times. The same pH leads to the formation of native-like intermediate (known from previous studies of this variant), meaning that the process of folding and amyloid-fibril formation share the same structural intermediate, which is in this case native-like and dimeric. At pH 5.8 and 7.0 stefin B folded to the native state in four kinetic phases over two intermediates. In distinction, the mutant H75W did not fold to completion, ending in intermediate states at all pH values studied: 4.8, 5.8 and 7.0. At pH 4.8 and 5.8, the mutant folded in one kinetic phase to the intermediate of the "molten globule" type, which leads to the conclusion that its mechanism of folding differs from the one of the parent stefin B at the same pH. At pH 7.0 the mutant H75W folded in three kinetic phases to a native-like intermediate, analogous to folding of stefin B at pH 4.8. PMID:22033403

  20. A conserved fold for fimbrial components revealed by the crystal structure of a putative fimbrial assembly protein (BT1062) from Bacteroides thetaiotaomicron at 2.2 Å resolution

    PubMed Central

    Xu, Qingping; Abdubek, Polat; Astakhova, Tamara; Axelrod, Herbert L.; Bakolitsa, Constantina; Cai, Xiaohui; Carlton, Dennis; Chen, Connie; Chiu, Hsiu-Ju; Chiu, Michelle; Clayton, Thomas; Das, Debanu; Deller, Marc C.; Duan, Lian; Ellrott, Kyle; Farr, Carol L.; Feuerhelm, Julie; Grant, Joanna C.; Grzechnik, Anna; Han, Gye Won; Jaroszewski, Lukasz; Jin, Kevin K.; Klock, Heath E.; Knuth, Mark W.; Kozbial, Piotr; Krishna, S. Sri; Kumar, Abhinav; Marciano, David; McMullan, Daniel; Miller, Mitchell D.; Morse, Andrew T.; Nigoghossian, Edward; Nopakun, Amanda; Okach, Linda; Puckett, Christina; Reyes, Ron; Sefcovic, Natasha; Tien, Henry J.; Trame, Christine B.; van den Bedem, Henry; Weekes, Dana; Wooten, Tiffany; Yeh, Andrew; Zhou, Jiadong; Hodgson, Keith O.; Wooley, John; Elsliger, Marc-Andre; Deacon, Ashley M.; Godzik, Adam; Lesley, Scott A.; Wilson, Ian A.

    2010-01-01

    BT1062 from Bacteroides thetaiotaomicron is a homolog of Mfa2 (PGN0288 or PG0179), which is a component of the minor fimbriae in Porphyromonas gingivalis. The crystal structure of BT1062 revealed a conserved fold that is widely adopted by fimbrial components. PMID:20944223

  1. Protein folds and protein folding

    PubMed Central

    Schaeffer, R. Dustin; Daggett, Valerie

    2011-01-01

    The classification of protein folds is necessarily based on the structural elements that distinguish domains. Classification of protein domains consists of two problems: the partition of structures into domains and the classification of domains into sets of similar structures (or folds). Although similar topologies may arise by convergent evolution, the similarity of their respective folding pathways is unknown. The discovery and the characterization of the majority of protein folds will be followed by a similar enumeration of available protein folding pathways. Consequently, understanding the intricacies of structural domains is necessary to understanding their collective folding pathways. We review the current state of the art in the field of protein domain classification and discuss methods for the systematic and comprehensive study of protein folding across protein fold space via atomistic molecular dynamics simulation. Finally, we discuss our large-scale Dynameomics project, which includes simulations of representatives of all autonomous protein folds. PMID:21051320

  2. Conservative Diffusions: a Constructive Approach to Nelson's Stochastic Mechanics.

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Carlen, Eric Anders

    In Nelson's stochastic mechanics, quantum phenomena are described in terms of diffusions instead of wave functions; this thesis is a study of that description. We emphasize that we are concerned here with the possibility of describing, as opposed to explaining, quantum phenomena in terms of diffusions. In this direction, the following questions arise: "Do the diffusions of stochastic mechanics--which are formally given by stochastic differential equations with extremely singular coefficients--really exist?" Given that they exist, one can ask, "Do these diffusions have physically reasonable sample path behavior, and can we use information about sample paths to study the behavior of physical systems?" These are the questions we treat in this thesis. In Chapter I we review stochastic mechanics and diffusion theory, using the Guerra-Morato variational principle to establish the connection with the Schroedinger equation. This chapter is largely expository; however, there are some novel features and proofs. In Chapter II we settle the first of the questions raised above. Using PDE methods, we construct the diffusions of stochastic mechanics. Our result is sufficiently general to be of independent mathematical interest. In Chapter III we treat potential scattering in stochastic mechanics and discuss direct probabilistic methods of studying quantum scattering problems. Our results provide a solid "Yes" in answer to the second question raised above.

  3. GroEL/ES Chaperonin Modulates the Mechanism and Accelerates the Rate of TIM-Barrel Domain Folding

    PubMed Central

    Bracher, Andreas; Engen, John R.; Hayer-Hartl, Manajit; Hartl, F. Ulrich

    2014-01-01

    SUMMARY The GroEL/ES chaperonin system functions as a protein folding cage. Many obligate substrates of GroEL share the (βα)8 TIM-barrel fold, but how the chaperonin promotes folding of these proteins is not known. Here we analyzed the folding of DapA at peptide resolution using hydrogen/deuterium exchange and mass spectrometry. During spontaneous folding, all elements of the DapA TIM-barrel acquire structure simultaneously, in a process associated with a long search time. In contrast, GroEL/ES accelerates folding more than 30-fold by catalyzing segmental structure formation in the TIM-barrel. Segmental structure formation is also observed during the fast spontaneous folding of a structural homolog of DapA from a bacterium that lacks GroEL/ES. Thus, chaperonin-independence correlates with folding properties otherwise enforced by protein confinement in the GroEL/ES cage. We suggest that folding catalysis by GroEL/ES is required by a set of proteins to reach native state at a biologically relevant time-scale, avoiding aggregation or degradation. PMID:24813614

  4. Transtensional folding

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Fossen, Haakon; Teyssier, Christian; Whitney, Donna L.

    2014-05-01

    For now three decades transpression has dominated the concepts that underlie oblique tectonics, but in more recent years transtension has garnered much interest as a simple model that can be applied to shallow and deep crustal tectonics. One fundamental aspect that distinguishes transtension from transpression is that material lines in transtension rotate toward the direction of oblique divergence. Another point that may be less intuitive when thinking of transtension is that while transtensional strain involves shortening in the vertical direction, one of the horizontal axes is also a shortening axis, whatever the angle of divergence. It is the combination of these two shortening axes that leads to constrictional finite strain in transtension. The existence of a horizontal shortening strain axis implies that transtension offers the potential for folds of horizontal layers to form and then rotate toward the direction of oblique divergence. An investigation of transtensional folding using 3D strain modeling reveals that folding is more likely for simple shear dominated transtension (large wrench component). Transtensional folds can only accumulate a fixed amount of horizontal shortening and tightness that are prescribed by the angle of oblique divergence, regardless of finite strain. Transtensional folds are characterized by hinge-parallel stretching that exceeds that expected from pure wrenching. In addition, the magnitude of hinge-parallel stretching always exceeds hinge-perpendicular shortening, causing constrictional fabrics and hinge-parallel boudinage to develop. Because the dominant vertical strain axis is shortening, transtensional fold growth is generally suppressed, but when folds do develop their limbs enter the field of shortening, resulting in possible fold interference patterns akin to cascading folds. Application of these transtensional folding principles to regions of oblique rifting (i.e. Gulf of California) or exhumation of deep crust (i.e. Western

  5. Effects of cohesion on the structural and mechanical evolution of fold and thrust belts and contractional wedges: Discrete element simulations

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Morgan, Julia K.

    2015-05-01

    Particle-based numerical simulations of cohesive contractional wedges can yield important perspectives on the formation and evolution of fold and thrust belts, offering particular insights into the mechanical evolution of the systems. Results of several discrete element method simulations are presented here, demonstrating the stress and strain evolution of systems with different initial cohesive strengths. Particle assemblages consolidated under gravity, and bonded to impart cohesion, are pushed from the left at a constant velocity above a weak, unbonded décollement surface. Internal thrusting causes horizontal shortening and vertical thickening, forming wedge geometries. The mean wedge taper is similar for all simulations, consistent with their similar residual and basal sliding friction values. In all examples presented here, both forethrusts and back thrusts occur, but forethrusts accommodate most of the shortening. Fault spacing and offset increase with increasing cohesion. Significant tectonic volume strain also occurs, with the greatest incremental volume strain occurring just outboard of the deformation front. This diffuse shortening serves to strengthen the unfaulted domain in front of the deformed wedge, preconditioning these materials for brittle (dilative) failure. The reach of this volumetric strain and extent of décollement slip increase with cohesive strength, defining the extent of stress transmission. Stress paths for elements tracked through the simulations demonstrate systematic variations in shear stress in response to episodes of both décollement slip and thrust fault activity, providing a direct explanation for stress fluctuations during convergence.

  6. A highly conserved family of domains related to the DNA-glycosylase fold helps predict multiple novel pathways for RNA modifications

    PubMed Central

    Burroughs, A Maxwell; Aravind, L

    2014-01-01

    A protein family including mammalian NEMF, Drosophila caliban, yeast Tae2, and bacterial FpbA-like proteins was first defined over a decade ago and found to be universally distributed across the three domains/superkingdoms of life. Since its initial characterization, this family of proteins has been tantalizingly linked to a wide range of biochemical functions. Tapping the enormous wealth of genome information that has accumulated since the initial characterization of these proteins, we perform a detailed computational analysis of the family, identifying multiple conserved domains. Domains identified include an enzymatic domain related to the formamidopyrimidine (Fpg), MutM, and Nei/EndoVIII family of DNA glycosylases, a novel, predicted RNA-binding domain, and a domain potentially mediating protein–protein interactions. Through this characterization, we predict that the DNA glycosylase-like domain catalytically operates on double-stranded RNA, as part of a hitherto unknown base modification mechanism that probably targets rRNAs. At least in archaea, and possibly eukaryotes, this pathway might additionally include the AMMECR1 family of proteins. The predicted RNA-binding domain associated with this family is also observed in distinct architectural contexts in other proteins across phylogenetically diverse prokaryotes. Here it is predicted to play a key role in a new pathway for tRNA 4-thiouridylation along with TusA-like sulfur transfer proteins. PMID:24646681

  7. Hierarchical folding mechanism of apomyoglobin revealed by ultra-fast H/D exchange coupled with 2D NMR.

    PubMed

    Uzawa, Takanori; Nishimura, Chiaki; Akiyama, Shuji; Ishimori, Koichiro; Takahashi, Satoshi; Dyson, H Jane; Wright, Peter E

    2008-09-16

    The earliest steps in the folding of proteins are complete on an extremely rapid time scale that is difficult to access experimentally. We have used rapid-mixing quench-flow methods to extend the time resolution of folding studies on apomyoglobin and elucidate the structural and dynamic features of members of the ensemble of intermediate states that are populated on a submillisecond time scale during this process. The picture that emerges is of a continuum of rapidly interconverting states. Even after only 0.4 ms of refolding time a compact state is formed that contains major parts of the A, G, and H helices, which are sufficiently well folded to protect amides from exchange. The B, C, and E helix regions fold more slowly and fluctuate rapidly between open and closed states as they search docking sites on this core; the secondary structure in these regions becomes stabilized as the refolding time is increased from 0.4 to 6 ms. No further stabilization occurs in the A, G, H core at 6 ms of folding time. These studies begin to time-resolve a progression of compact states between the fully unfolded and native folded states and confirm the presence an ensemble of intermediates that interconvert in a hierarchical sequence as the protein searches conformational space on its folding trajectory. PMID:18779573

  8. Fast protein folding kinetics

    PubMed Central

    Gelman, Hannah; Gruebele, Martin

    2014-01-01

    Fast folding proteins have been a major focus of computational and experimental study because they are accessible to both techniques: they are small and fast enough to be reasonably simulated with current computational power, but have dynamics slow enough to be observed with specially developed experimental techniques. This coupled study of fast folding proteins has provided insight into the mechanisms which allow some proteins to find their native conformation well less than 1 ms and has uncovered examples of theoretically predicted phenomena such as downhill folding. The study of fast folders also informs our understanding of even “slow” folding processes: fast folders are small, relatively simple protein domains and the principles that govern their folding also govern the folding of more complex systems. This review summarizes the major theoretical and experimental techniques used to study fast folding proteins and provides an overview of the major findings of fast folding research. Finally, we examine the themes that have emerged from studying fast folders and briefly summarize their application to protein folding in general as well as some work that is left to do. PMID:24641816

  9. Acceleration of the Rate-Limiting Step of Thioredoxin Folding by Replacement of its Conserved cis-Proline with (4 S)-Fluoroproline.

    PubMed

    Roderer, Daniel; Glockshuber, Rudi; Rubini, Marina

    2015-10-12

    The incorporation of the non-natural amino acids (4R)- and (4S)-fluoroproline (Flp) has been successfully used to improve protein stability, but little is known about their effect on protein folding kinetics. Here we analyzed the influence of (4R)- and (4S)-Flp on the rate-limiting trans-to-cis isomerization of the Ile75-Pro76 peptide bond in the folding of Escherichia coli thioredoxin (Trx). While (4R)-Flp at position 76 had essentially no effect on the isomerization rate in the context of the intact tertiary structure, (4S)-Flp accelerated the folding reaction ninefold. Similarly, tenfold faster trans-to-cis isomerization of Ile75-(4S)-Flp76 relative to Ile75-Pro76 was observed in the unfolded state of Trx. Our results show that the replacement of cis prolines by non-natural proline analogues can be used for modulating the folding rates of proteins with cis prolyl-peptide bonds in the native state. PMID:26382254

  10. Mechanical constraints on the chronology of fracture activation in folded Devonian sandstone of the western Moroccan Anti-Atlas

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Guiton, Martin L. E.; Sassi, William; Leroy, Yves M.; Gauthier, Bertrand D. M.

    2003-08-01

    The three-dimensional meter-scale fracture networks, observed on exposed folds between the towns of Tata and Akka, western Moroccan Anti-Atlas, consist mostly of planar discontinuities, which are sub-perpendicular to the bedding and partitioned in three main sets. The chronology of their activation is proposed in five stages since the Hercynian orogeny. Stage 1 predates folding and involves the horizontal compression of the Emsian sandstone. It involves fracture set I, composed of systematic joints parallel to the direction of compression. Stages 2-4 correspond to the folding and are marked in the outer-arc by the activation of fracture set II, composed mainly of joints parallel to the fold axial plane. Stage 5 is a regional shear event during which sets I and III, separated by an angle close to 60°, are activated in a conjugate manner. To throw light on the recurrent difficulty in discriminating between activation of inherited and new fractures, an elasto-plastic model is used to construct a stress path in the pervasively fractured medium idealized as a continuum. Each fracture set obeys the Mohr-Coulomb criterion truncated in tension to describe both sliding and opening activations. Finite-element simulations of a simple buckling event accounting for the field fracture sets are presented. It is shown that set I cannot be generated by folding and thus does belong to stage 1. Set II is activated at a later stage of folding than expected from the field interpretation. Set III cannot be activated during stage 2, confirming its role in stage 5. The advantages and limitations of the proposed modeling are finally discussed.

  11. Multiply folded graphene

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Kim, Kwanpyo; Lee, Zonghoon; Malone, Brad D.; Chan, Kevin T.; Alemán, Benjamín; Regan, William; Gannett, Will; Crommie, M. F.; Cohen, Marvin L.; Zettl, A.

    2011-06-01

    The folding of paper, hide, and woven fabric has been used for millennia to achieve enhanced articulation, curvature, and visual appeal for intrinsically flat, two-dimensional materials. For graphene, an ideal two-dimensional material, folding may transform it to complex shapes with new and distinct properties. Here, we present experimental results that folded structures in graphene, termed grafold, exist, and their formations can be controlled by introducing anisotropic surface curvature during graphene synthesis or transfer processes. Using pseudopotential-density-functional-theory calculations, we also show that double folding modifies the electronic band structure of graphene. Furthermore, we demonstrate the intercalation of C60 into the grafolds. Intercalation or functionalization of the chemically reactive folds further expands grafold's mechanical, chemical, optical, and electronic diversity.

  12. Bi-stable vocal fold adduction: A mechanism of modal-falsetto register shifts and mixed registration

    PubMed Central

    Titze, Ingo R.

    2014-01-01

    The origin of vocal registers has generally been attributed to differential activation of cricothyroid and thyroarytenoid muscles in the larynx. Register shifts, however, have also been shown to be affected by glottal pressures exerted on vocal fold surfaces, which can change with loudness, pitch, and vowel. Here it is shown computationally and with empirical data that intraglottal pressures can change abruptly when glottal adductory geometry is changed relatively smoothly from convergent to divergent. An intermediate shape between large convergence and large divergence, namely, a nearly rectangular glottal shape with almost parallel vocal fold surfaces, is associated with mixed registration. It can be less stable than either of the highly angular shapes unless transglottal pressure is reduced and upper stiffness of vocal fold tissues is balanced with lower stiffness. This intermediate state of adduction is desirable because it leads to a low phonation threshold pressure with moderate vocal fold collision. Achieving mixed registration consistently across wide ranges of F0, lung pressure, and vocal tract shapes appears to be a balancing act of coordinating laryngeal muscle activation with vocal tract pressures. Surprisingly, a large transglottal pressure is not facilitative in this process, exacerbating the bi-stable condition and the associated register contrast. PMID:25235006

  13. The interplay of fold mechanisms and basement weaknesses at the transition between Laramide basement-involved arches, north-central Wyoming, USA

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Neely, Thomas G.; Erslev, Eric A.

    2009-09-01

    Horizontally-shortened, basement-involved foreland orogens commonly exhibit anastomosing networks of bifurcating basement highs (here called arches) whose structural culminations are linked by complex transition zones of diversely-oriented faults and folds. The 3D geometry and kinematics of the southern Beartooth arch transition zone of north-central Wyoming were studied to understand the fold mechanisms and control on basement-involved arches. Data from 1581 slickensided minor faults are consistent with a single regional shortening direction of 065°. Evidence for oblique-slip, vertical axis rotations and stress refraction at anomalously-oriented folds suggests formation over reactivated pre-existing weaknesses. Restorable cross-sections and 3D surfaces, constrained by surface, well, and seismic data, document blind, ENE-directed basement thrusting and associated thin-skinned backthrusting and folding along the Beartooth and Oregon Basin fault systems. Between these systems, the basement-cored Rattlesnake Mountain backthrust followed basement weaknesses and rotated a basement chip toward the basin before the ENE-directed Line Creek fault system broke through and connected the Beartooth and Oregon Basin fault systems. Slip was transferred at the terminations of the Rattlesnake Mountain fault block by pivoting to the north and tear faulting to the south. In summary, unidirectional Laramide compression and pre-existing basement weaknesses combined with fault-propagation and rotational fault-bend folding to create an irregular yet continuous basement arch transition.

  14. Smooth-particle applied mechanics: Conservation of angular momentum with tensile stability and velocity averaging.

    PubMed

    Hoover, Wm G; Hoover, Carol G; Merritt, Elizabeth C

    2004-01-01

    Smooth-particle applied mechanics (SPAM) provides several approaches to approximate solutions of the continuum equations for both fluids and solids. Though many of the usual formulations conserve mass, (linear) momentum, and energy, the angular momentum is typically not conserved by SPAM. A second difficulty with the usual formulations is that tensile stress states often exhibit an exponentially fast high-frequency short-wavelength instability, "tensile instability." We discuss these twin defects of SPAM and illustrate them for a rotating elastic body. We formulate ways to conserve angular momentum while at the same time delaying the symptoms of tensile instability for many sound-traversal times. These ideas should prove useful in more general situations. PMID:14995750

  15. Structure of the Pseudokinase VRK3 Reveals a Degraded Catalytic Site, a Highly Conserved Kinase Fold, and a Putative Regulatory Binding Site

    PubMed Central

    Scheeff, Eric D.; Eswaran, Jeyanthy; Bunkoczi, Gabor; Knapp, Stefan; Manning, Gerard

    2009-01-01

    Summary About 10% of all protein kinases are predicted to be enzymatically inactive pseudokinases, but the structural details of kinase inactivation have remained unclear. We present the first structure of a pseudokinase, VRK3, and that of its closest active relative, VRK2. Profound changes to the active site region underlie the loss of catalytic activity, and VRK3 cannot bind ATP because of residue substitutions in the binding pocket. However, VRK3 still shares striking structural similarity with VRK2, and appears to be locked in a pseudoactive conformation. VRK3 also conserves residue interactions that are surprising in the absence of enzymatic function; these appear to play important architectural roles required for the residual functions of VRK3. Remarkably, VRK3 has an “inverted” pattern of sequence conservation: although the active site is poorly conserved, portions of the molecular surface show very high conservation, suggesting that they form key interactions that explain the evolutionary retention of VRK3. PMID:19141289

  16. Functionally Relevant Specific Packing Can Determine Protein Folding Routes.

    PubMed

    Yadahalli, Shilpa; Gosavi, Shachi

    2016-01-29

    Functional residues can modulate the folding mechanisms of proteins. In some proteins, mutations to such residues can radically change the primary folding route. Is it possible then to learn more about the functional regions of a protein by investigating just its choice of folding route? The folding and the function of the protein Escherichia coli ribonuclease H (ecoRNase-H) have been extensively studied and its folding route is known to near-residue resolution. Here, we computationally study the folding of ecoRNase-H using molecular dynamics simulations of structure-based models of increasing complexity. The differences between a model that correctly predicts the experimentally determined folding route and a simpler model that does not can be attributed to a set of six aromatic residues clustered together in a region of the protein called CORE. This clustering, which we term "specific" packing, drives CORE to fold early and determines the folding route. Both the residues involved in specific packing and their packing are largely conserved across E. coli-like RNase-Hs from diverse species. Residue conservation is usually implicated in function. Here, the identified residues either are known to bind substrate in ecoRNase-H or pack against the substrate in the homologous human RNase-H where a substrate-bound crystal structure exists. Thus, the folding mechanism of ecoRNase-H is a byproduct of functional demands upon its sequence. Using our observations on specific packing, we suggest mutations to an engineered HIV RNase-H to make its function better. Our results show that understanding folding route choice in proteins can provide unexpected insights into their function. PMID:26724535

  17. Probing the folded state and mechanical unfolding pathways of T4 lysozyme using all-atom and coarse-grained molecular simulation

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Zheng, Wenjun; Glenn, Paul

    2015-01-01

    The Bacteriophage T4 Lysozyme (T4L) is a prototype modular protein comprised of an N-terminal and a C-domain domain, which was extensively studied to understand the folding/unfolding mechanism of modular proteins. To offer detailed structural and dynamic insights to the folded-state stability and the mechanical unfolding behaviors of T4L, we have performed extensive equilibrium and steered molecular dynamics simulations of both the wild-type (WT) and a circular permutation (CP) variant of T4L using all-atom and coarse-grained force fields. Our all-atom and coarse-grained simulations of the folded state have consistently found greater stability of the C-domain than the N-domain in isolation, which is in agreement with past thermostatic studies of T4L. While the all-atom simulation cannot fully explain the mechanical unfolding behaviors of the WT and the CP variant observed in an optical tweezers study, the coarse-grained simulations based on the Go model or a modified elastic network model (mENM) are in qualitative agreement with the experimental finding of greater unfolding cooperativity in the WT than the CP variant. Interestingly, the two coarse-grained models predict different structural mechanisms for the observed change in cooperativity between the WT and the CP variant—while the Go model predicts minor modification of the unfolding pathways by circular permutation (i.e., preserving the general order that the N-domain unfolds before the C-domain), the mENM predicts a dramatic change in unfolding pathways (e.g., different order of N/C-domain unfolding in the WT and the CP variant). Based on our simulations, we have analyzed the limitations of and the key differences between these models and offered testable predictions for future experiments to resolve the structural mechanism for cooperative folding/unfolding of T4L.

  18. Probing the folded state and mechanical unfolding pathways of T4 lysozyme using all-atom and coarse-grained molecular simulation

    SciTech Connect

    Zheng, Wenjun Glenn, Paul

    2015-01-21

    The Bacteriophage T4 Lysozyme (T4L) is a prototype modular protein comprised of an N-terminal and a C-domain domain, which was extensively studied to understand the folding/unfolding mechanism of modular proteins. To offer detailed structural and dynamic insights to the folded-state stability and the mechanical unfolding behaviors of T4L, we have performed extensive equilibrium and steered molecular dynamics simulations of both the wild-type (WT) and a circular permutation (CP) variant of T4L using all-atom and coarse-grained force fields. Our all-atom and coarse-grained simulations of the folded state have consistently found greater stability of the C-domain than the N-domain in isolation, which is in agreement with past thermostatic studies of T4L. While the all-atom simulation cannot fully explain the mechanical unfolding behaviors of the WT and the CP variant observed in an optical tweezers study, the coarse-grained simulations based on the Go model or a modified elastic network model (mENM) are in qualitative agreement with the experimental finding of greater unfolding cooperativity in the WT than the CP variant. Interestingly, the two coarse-grained models predict different structural mechanisms for the observed change in cooperativity between the WT and the CP variant—while the Go model predicts minor modification of the unfolding pathways by circular permutation (i.e., preserving the general order that the N-domain unfolds before the C-domain), the mENM predicts a dramatic change in unfolding pathways (e.g., different order of N/C-domain unfolding in the WT and the CP variant). Based on our simulations, we have analyzed the limitations of and the key differences between these models and offered testable predictions for future experiments to resolve the structural mechanism for cooperative folding/unfolding of T4L.

  19. Single-Molecule Folding Mechanisms of the apo- and Mg2+-Bound States of Human Neuronal Calcium Sensor-1

    PubMed Central

    Naqvi, Mohsin M.; Heidarsson, Pétur O.; Otazo, Mariela R.; Mossa, Alessandro; Kragelund, Birthe B.; Cecconi, Ciro

    2015-01-01

    Neuronal calcium sensor-1 (NCS-1) is the primordial member of a family of proteins responsible primarily for sensing changes in neuronal Ca2+ concentration. NCS-1 is a multispecific protein interacting with a number of binding partners in both calcium-dependent and independent manners, and acting in a variety of cellular processes in which it has been linked to a number of disorders such as schizophrenia and autism. Despite extensive studies on the Ca2+-activated state of NCS proteins, little is known about the conformational dynamics of the Mg2+-bound and apo states, both of which are populated, at least transiently, at resting Ca2+ conditions. Here, we used optical tweezers to study the folding behavior of individual NCS-1 molecules in the presence of Mg2+ and in the absence of divalent ions. Under tension, the Mg2+-bound state of NCS-1 unfolds and refolds in a three-state process by populating one intermediate state consisting of a folded C-domain and an unfolded N-domain. The interconversion at equilibrium between the different molecular states populated by NCS-1 was monitored in real time through constant-force measurements and the energy landscapes underlying the observed transitions were reconstructed through hidden Markov model analysis. Unlike what has been observed with the Ca2+-bound state, the presence of Mg2+ allows both the N- and C-domain to fold through all-or-none transitions with similar refolding rates. In the absence of divalent ions, NCS-1 unfolds and refolds reversibly in a two-state reaction involving only the C-domain, whereas the N-domain has no detectable transitions. Overall, the results allowed us to trace the progression of NCS-1 folding along its energy landscapes and provided a solid platform for understanding the conformational dynamics of similar EF-hand proteins. PMID:26153708

  20. Information from folds: A review

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Hudleston, Peter J.; Treagus, Susan H.

    2010-12-01

    Folds are spectacular geological structures that are seen in layered rock on many different scales. To mark 30 years of the Journal of Structural Geology, we review the information that can be gained from studies of folds in theory, experiment and nature. We first review theoretical considerations and modeling, from classical approaches to current developments. The subject is dominated by single-layer fold theory, with the assumption of perfect layer-parallel shortening, but we also review multilayer fold theory and modeling, and folding of layers that are oblique to principal stresses and strains. This work demonstrates that viscosity ratio, degree of non-linearity of the flow law, anisotropy, and the thickness and spacing distribution of layers of different competence are all important in determining the nature and strength of the folding instability. Theory and modeling provide the basis for obtaining rheological information from natural folds, through analysis of wavelength/thickness ratios of single layer folds, and fold shapes. They also provide a basis for estimating the bulk strain from folded layers. Information about folding mechanisms can be obtained by analysis of cleavage and fabric patterns in folded rocks, and the history of deformation can be revealed by understanding how asymmetry can develop in folds, by how folds develop in shear zones, and how folds develop in more complex three-dimensional deformations.

  1. Rv0216, a Conserved Hypothetical Protein from Myocbacterium Tuberculosis that is Essential for Bacterial Survival During Infection, has a Double Hotdog Fold

    SciTech Connect

    Castell,A.; Johansson, P.; Unge, T.; Jones, T.; Backbro, K.

    2005-01-01

    The Mycobacterium tuberculosis genome contains about 4000 genes, of which approximately a third code for proteins of unknown function or are classified as conserved hypothetical proteins. We have determined the three-dimensional structure of one of these, the rv0216 gene product, which has been shown to be essential for M. tuberculosis growth in vivo. The structure exhibits the greatest similarity to bacterial and eukaryotic hydratases that catalyse the R-specific hydration of 2-enoyl coenzyme A. However, only part of the catalytic machinery is conserved in Rv0216 and it showed no activity for the substrate crotonyl-CoA. The structure of Rv0216 allows us to assign new functional annotations to a family of seven other M. tuberculosis proteins, a number if which are essential for bacterial survival during infection and growth.

  2. Universally Conserved Relationships between Nuclear Shape and Cytoplasmic Mechanical Properties in Human Stem Cells

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Lozoya, Oswaldo A.; Gilchrist, Christopher L.; Guilak, Farshid

    2016-03-01

    The ability of cells to proliferate, differentiate, transduce extracellular signals and assemble tissues involves structural connections between nucleus and cytoskeleton. Yet, how the mechanics of these connections vary inside stem cells is not fully understood. To address those questions, we combined two-dimensional particle-tracking microrheology and morphological measures using variable reduction techniques to measure whether cytoplasmic mechanics allow for discrimination between different human adherent stem cell types and across different culture conditions. Here we show that nuclear shape is a quantifiable discriminant of mechanical properties in the perinuclear cytoskeleton (pnCSK) of various stem cell types. Also, we find the pnCSK is a region with different mechanical properties than elsewhere in the cytoskeleton, with heterogeneously distributed locations exhibiting subdiffusive features, and which obeys physical relations conserved among various stem cell types. Finally, we offer a prospective basis to discriminate between stem cell types by coupling perinuclear mechanical properties to nuclear shape.

  3. Universally Conserved Relationships between Nuclear Shape and Cytoplasmic Mechanical Properties in Human Stem Cells

    PubMed Central

    Lozoya, Oswaldo A.; Gilchrist, Christopher L.; Guilak, Farshid

    2016-01-01

    The ability of cells to proliferate, differentiate, transduce extracellular signals and assemble tissues involves structural connections between nucleus and cytoskeleton. Yet, how the mechanics of these connections vary inside stem cells is not fully understood. To address those questions, we combined two-dimensional particle-tracking microrheology and morphological measures using variable reduction techniques to measure whether cytoplasmic mechanics allow for discrimination between different human adherent stem cell types and across different culture conditions. Here we show that nuclear shape is a quantifiable discriminant of mechanical properties in the perinuclear cytoskeleton (pnCSK) of various stem cell types. Also, we find the pnCSK is a region with different mechanical properties than elsewhere in the cytoskeleton, with heterogeneously distributed locations exhibiting subdiffusive features, and which obeys physical relations conserved among various stem cell types. Finally, we offer a prospective basis to discriminate between stem cell types by coupling perinuclear mechanical properties to nuclear shape. PMID:26976044

  4. Stress, deformation, conservation, and rheology: a survey of key concepts in continuum mechanics

    USGS Publications Warehouse

    Major, J.J.

    2013-01-01

    This chapter provides a brief survey of key concepts in continuum mechanics. It focuses on the fundamental physical concepts that underlie derivations of the mathematical formulations of stress, strain, hydraulic head, pore-fluid pressure, and conservation equations. It then shows how stresses are linked to strain and rates of distortion through some special cases of idealized material behaviors. The goal is to equip the reader with a physical understanding of key mathematical formulations that anchor continuum mechanics in order to better understand theoretical studies published in geomorphology.

  5. Probing Kinetic Mechanisms of Protein Function and Folding with Time-Resolved Natural and Magnetic Chiroptical Spectroscopies

    PubMed Central

    Kliger, David S.; Chen, Eefei; Goldbeck, Robert A.

    2012-01-01

    Recent and ongoing developments in time-resolved spectroscopy have made it possible to monitor circular dichroism, magnetic circular dichroism, optical rotatory dispersion, and magnetic optical rotatory dispersion with nanosecond time resolution. These techniques have been applied to determine structural changes associated with the function of several proteins as well as to determine the nature of early events in protein folding. These studies have required new approaches in triggering protein reactions as well as the development of time-resolved techniques for polarization spectroscopies with sufficient time resolution and sensitivity to probe protein structural changes. PMID:22312279

  6. Divergent mechanisms regulate conserved cardiopharyngeal development and gene expression in distantly related ascidians

    PubMed Central

    Stolfi, Alberto; Lowe, Elijah K; Racioppi, Claudia; Ristoratore, Filomena; Brown, C Titus; Swalla, Billie J; Christiaen, Lionel

    2014-01-01

    Ascidians present a striking dichotomy between conserved phenotypes and divergent genomes: embryonic cell lineages and gene expression patterns are conserved between distantly related species. Much research has focused on Ciona or Halocynthia spp. but development in other ascidians remains poorly characterized. In this study, we surveyed the multipotent myogenic B7.5 lineage in Molgula spp. Comparisons to the homologous lineage in Ciona revealed identical cell division and fate specification events that result in segregation of larval, cardiac, and pharyngeal muscle progenitors. Moreover, the expression patterns of key regulators are conserved, but cross-species transgenic assays uncovered incompatibility, or ‘unintelligibility’, of orthologous cis-regulatory sequences between Molgula and Ciona. These sequences drive identical expression patterns that are not recapitulated in cross-species assays. We show that this unintelligibility is likely due to changes in both cis- and trans-acting elements, hinting at widespread and frequent turnover of regulatory mechanisms underlying otherwise conserved aspects of ascidian embryogenesis. DOI: http://dx.doi.org/10.7554/eLife.03728.001 PMID:25209999

  7. Protein conservation and variation suggest mechanisms of cell type-specific modulation of signaling pathways.

    PubMed

    Schaefer, Martin H; Yang, Jae-Seong; Serrano, Luis; Kiel, Christina

    2014-06-01

    Many proteins and signaling pathways are present in most cell types and tissues and yet perform specialized functions. To elucidate mechanisms by which these ubiquitous pathways are modulated, we overlaid information about cross-cell line protein abundance and variability, and evolutionary conservation onto functional pathway components and topological layers in the pathway hierarchy. We found that the input (receptors) and the output (transcription factors) layers evolve more rapidly than proteins in the intermediary transmission layer. In contrast, protein expression variability decreases from the input to the output layer. We observed that the differences in protein variability between the input and transmission layer can be attributed to both the network position and the tendency of variable proteins to physically interact with constitutively expressed proteins. Differences in protein expression variability and conservation are also accompanied by the tendency of conserved and constitutively expressed proteins to acquire somatic mutations, while germline mutations tend to occur in cell type-specific proteins. Thus, conserved core proteins in the transmission layer could perform a fundamental role in most cell types and are therefore less tolerant to germline mutations. In summary, we propose that the core signal transmission machinery is largely modulated by a variable input layer through physical protein interactions. We hypothesize that the bow-tie organization of cellular signaling on the level of protein abundance variability contributes to the specificity of the signal response in different cell types. PMID:24922536

  8. Efficient molecular mechanics simulations of the folding, orientation, and assembly of peptides in lipid bilayers using an implicit atomic solvation model

    PubMed Central

    Bordner, Andrew J.; Zorman, Barry; Abagyan, Ruben

    2014-01-01

    Membrane proteins comprise a significant fraction of the proteomes of sequenced organisms and are the targets of approximately half of marketed drugs. However, in spite of their prevalence and biomedical importance, relatively few experimental structures are available due to technical challenges. Computational simulations can potentially address this deficit by providing structural models of membrane proteins. Solvation within the spatially heterogeneous membrane/solvent environment provides a major component of the energetics driving protein folding and association within the membrane. We have developed an implicit solvation model for membranes that is both computationally efficient and accurate enough to enable molecular mechanics predictions for the folding and association of peptides within the membrane. We derived the new atomic solvation model parameters using an unbiased fitting procedure to experimental data and have applied it to diverse problems in order to test its accuracy and to gain insight into membrane protein folding. First, we predicted the positions and orientations of peptides and complexes within the lipid bilayer and compared the simulation results with solid-state NMR structures. Next, we performed folding simulations for a series of host-guest peptides with varying propensities to form alpha helices in a hydrophobic environment and compared the structures with experimental measurements. We were also able to successfully predict the structures of amphipathic peptides as well as the structures for dimeric complexes of short hexapeptides that have experimentally characterized propensities to form beta sheets within the membrane. Finally, we compared calculated relative transfer energies with data from experiments measuring the effects of mutations on the free energies of translocon-mediated insertion of proteins into lipid bilayers and of combined folding and membrane insertion of a beta barrel protein. PMID:21904908

  9. The Mechanics, Geometry and Distribution of Strike Slip Faults in a Fold and Thrust Belt, County Clare, Ireland

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Nenna, F. A.; Aydin, A.

    2010-12-01

    Fundamental structures such as opening mode joints and veins, and closing mode pressure solution seams (PSSs) can form dense orthogonal arrays in collisional deformation belts and play important roles in the initiation and development of larger scale faults. We describe the deformation processes and the evolution of fault architecture using systematic documentation of field observations from arrays of strike-slip faults in the Carboniferous Ross Sandstone. This unit is exposed on the Loop Head Peninsula, County Clare, Ireland and was subject to compressive stresses associated with the Variscan orogeny at the end of the Carboniferous producing broad regional east-west trending folds and also tight low-amplitude folds cored by thrust faults. Near these faults, orthogonal sets of PSSs and joints/veins form contemporaneous arrays with pressure solution seams that are sub-parallel to the thrust fault traces and fold axes. A stress or material rotation during the Variscan Orogeny (or perhaps a major second stage of deformation either in late phase of the orogeny or post-orogeny) has lead to left-lateral shear of the PSSs evidenced by pressure solution splays and pull-aparts between their sheared segments, and right-lateral shear on the joints/veins evidenced by splay fractures. The splays of the sheared joints are in the same orientation of the joints in the pull-aparts of the sheared PSSs with which they merge. This indicates that the shearing of the joints/veins and the PSSs was likely to have occurred simultaneously under the same remote loading conditions. With increased shear, extensive splay fractures and pull-apart networks form weak damage zones through which strike-slip faults systems develop with slip of up to 2km. As a higher proportion of the shear is resolved on the joint system than that of the PSS system, the more prominent strike-slip faults are sub-parallel to or slightly inclined to the pre-existing joint/vein set and have a right-lateral sense of slip

  10. Vibrational dynamics of vocal folds using nonlinear normal modes.

    PubMed

    Pinheiro, Alan P; Kerschen, Gaëtan

    2013-08-01

    Many previous works involving physical models, excised and in vivo larynges have pointed out nonlinear vibration in vocal folds during voice production. Moreover, theoretical studies involving mechanical modeling of these folds have tried to gain a profound understanding of the observed nonlinear phenomena. In this context, the present work uses the nonlinear normal mode theory to investigate the nonlinear modal behavior of 16 subjects using a two-mass mechanical modeling of the vocal folds. The free response of the conservative system at different energy levels is considered to assess the impact of the structural nonlinearity of the vocal fold tissues. The results show very interesting and complex nonlinear phenomena including frequency-energy dependence, subharmonic regimes and, in some cases, modal interactions, entrainment and bifurcations. PMID:23218815

  11. A conserved structural mechanism of NMDA receptor inhibition: A comparison of ifenprodil and zinc

    PubMed Central

    Sirrieh, Rita E.; MacLean, David M.

    2015-01-01

    N-methyl-d-aspartate (NMDA) receptors, one of the three main types of ionotropic glutamate receptors (iGluRs), are involved in excitatory synaptic transmission, and their dysfunction is implicated in various neurological disorders. NMDA receptors, heterotetramers typically composed of GluN1 and GluN2 subunits, are the only members of the iGluR family that bind allosteric modulators at their amino-terminal domains (ATDs). We used luminescence resonance energy transfer to characterize the conformational changes the receptor undergoes upon binding ifenprodil, a synthetic compound that specifically inhibits activation of NMDA receptors containing GluN2B. We found that ifenprodil induced an overall closure of the GluN2B ATD without affecting conformation of the GluN1 ATD or the upper lobes of the ATDs, the same mechanism whereby zinc inhibits GluN2A. These data demonstrate that the conformational changes induced by zinc and ifenprodil represent a conserved mechanism of NMDA receptor inhibition. Additionally, we compared the structural mechanism of zinc inhibition of GluN1–GluN2A receptors to that of ifenprodil inhibition of GluN1–GluN2B. The similarities in the conformational changes induced by inhibitor binding suggest a conserved structural mechanism of inhibition independent of the binding site of the modulator. PMID:26170175

  12. Drosophila glia use a conserved cotransporter mechanism to regulate extracellular volume

    PubMed Central

    Leiserson, William M.; Forbush, Biff; Keshishian, Haig

    2010-01-01

    The nervous system is protected by blood barriers that use multiple systems to control extracellular solute composition, osmotic pressure, and fluid volume. In the human nervous system, misregulation of the extracellular volume poses serious health threats. Here we show that the glial cells that form the Drosophila blood-nerve barrier have a conserved molecular mechanism that regulates extracellular volume: the Serine/Threonine kinase Fray, which we previously showed is an ortholog of mammalian PASK/SPAK; and the Na-K-Cl cotransporter NCC69, which we show is an ortholog of human NKCC1. In mammals, PASK/SPAK binds to NKCC1 and regulates its activity. In Drosophila, larvae mutant for NCC69 develop a peripheral neuropathy, where fluid accumulates between glia and axons. The accumulation of fluid has no detectable impact on action potential conduction, suggesting that the role of NCC69 is to maintain volume or osmotic homeostasis. Drosophila NCC69 has kinetics similar to human NKCC1, and NKCC1 can rescue NCC69, suggesting that they function in a conserved physiological mechanism. We show that fray and NCC69 are coexpressed in nerve glia, interact in a yeast-two-hybrid assay, and have an essentially identical bulging nerve phenotype. We propose that normally functioning nerves generate extracellular solutes that are removed by NCC69 under the control of Fray. This mechanism may perform a similar role in humans, given that NKCC1 is expressed at the blood-brain barrier. PMID:21125654

  13. A Broadly Conserved G-Protein-Coupled Receptor Kinase Phosphorylation Mechanism Controls Drosophila Smoothened Activity

    PubMed Central

    Maier, Dominic; Cheng, Shuofei; Faubert, Denis; Hipfner, David R.

    2014-01-01

    Hedgehog (Hh) signaling is essential for normal growth, patterning, and homeostasis of many tissues in diverse organisms, and is misregulated in a variety of diseases including cancer. Cytoplasmic Hedgehog signaling is activated by multisite phosphorylation of the seven-pass transmembrane protein Smoothened (Smo) in its cytoplasmic C-terminus. Aside from a short membrane-proximal stretch, the sequence of the C-terminus is highly divergent in different phyla, and the evidence suggests that the precise mechanism of Smo activation and transduction of the signal to downstream effectors also differs. To clarify the conserved role of G-protein-coupled receptor kinases (GRKs) in Smo regulation, we mapped four clusters of phosphorylation sites in the membrane-proximal C-terminus of Drosophila Smo that are phosphorylated by Gprk2, one of the two fly GRKs. Phosphorylation at these sites enhances Smo dimerization and increases but is not essential for Smo activity. Three of these clusters overlap with regulatory phosphorylation sites in mouse Smo and are highly conserved throughout the bilaterian lineages, suggesting that they serve a common function. Consistent with this, we find that a C-terminally truncated form of Drosophila Smo consisting of just the highly conserved core, including Gprk2 regulatory sites, can recruit the downstream effector Costal-2 and activate target gene expression, in a Gprk2-dependent manner. These results indicate that GRK phosphorylation in the membrane proximal C-terminus is an evolutionarily ancient mechanism of Smo regulation, and point to a higher degree of similarity in the regulation and signaling mechanisms of bilaterian Smo proteins than has previously been recognized. PMID:25009998

  14. Changes in the folding landscape of the WW domain provide a molecular mechanism for an inherited genetic syndrome

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Pucheta-Martinez, Encarna; D’Amelio, Nicola; Lelli, Moreno; Martinez-Torrecuadrada, Jorge L.; Sudol, Marius; Saladino, Giorgio; Gervasio, Francesco Luigi

    2016-07-01

    WW domains are small domains present in many human proteins with a wide array of functions and acting through the recognition of proline-rich sequences. The WW domain belonging to polyglutamine tract-binding protein 1 (PQBP1) is of particular interest due to its direct involvement in several X chromosome-linked intellectual disabilities, including Golabi-Ito-Hall (GIH) syndrome, where a single point mutation (Y65C) correlates with the development of the disease. The mutant cannot bind to its natural ligand WBP11, which regulates mRNA processing. In this work we use high-field high-resolution NMR and enhanced sampling molecular dynamics simulations to gain insight into the molecular causes the disease. We find that the wild type protein is partially unfolded exchanging among multiple beta-strand-like conformations in solution. The Y65C mutation further destabilizes the residual fold and primes the protein for the formation of a disulphide bridge, which could be at the origin of the loss of function.

  15. Changes in the folding landscape of the WW domain provide a molecular mechanism for an inherited genetic syndrome.

    PubMed

    Pucheta-Martinez, Encarna; D'Amelio, Nicola; Lelli, Moreno; Martinez-Torrecuadrada, Jorge L; Sudol, Marius; Saladino, Giorgio; Gervasio, Francesco Luigi

    2016-01-01

    WW domains are small domains present in many human proteins with a wide array of functions and acting through the recognition of proline-rich sequences. The WW domain belonging to polyglutamine tract-binding protein 1 (PQBP1) is of particular interest due to its direct involvement in several X chromosome-linked intellectual disabilities, including Golabi-Ito-Hall (GIH) syndrome, where a single point mutation (Y65C) correlates with the development of the disease. The mutant cannot bind to its natural ligand WBP11, which regulates mRNA processing. In this work we use high-field high-resolution NMR and enhanced sampling molecular dynamics simulations to gain insight into the molecular causes the disease. We find that the wild type protein is partially unfolded exchanging among multiple beta-strand-like conformations in solution. The Y65C mutation further destabilizes the residual fold and primes the protein for the formation of a disulphide bridge, which could be at the origin of the loss of function. PMID:27456546

  16. The Crystal Structure of Dehi Reveals a New A-Haloacid Dehalogenase Fold And Active Site Mechanism

    SciTech Connect

    Schmidberger, J.W.; Wilce, J.A.; Weightman, A.J.; Whisstock, J.C.; Wilce, M.C.J.

    2009-05-27

    Haloacid dehalogenases catalyse the removal of halides from organic haloacids and are of interest for bioremediation and for their potential use in the synthesis of industrial chemicals. We present the crystal structure of the homodimer DehI from Pseudomonas putida strain PP3, the first structure of a group I {alpha}-haloacid dehalogenase that can process both L- and D-substrates. The structure shows that the DehI monomer consists of two domains of {approx}130 amino acids that have {approx}16% sequence identity yet adopt virtually identical and unique folds that form a pseudo-dimer. Analysis of the active site reveals the likely binding mode of both L- and D-substrates with respect to key catalytic residues. Asp189 is predicted to activate a water molecule for nucleophilic attack of the substrate chiral centre resulting in an inversion of configuration of either L- or D-substrates in contrast to D-only enzymes. These details will assist with future bioengineering of dehalogenases.

  17. Changes in the folding landscape of the WW domain provide a molecular mechanism for an inherited genetic syndrome

    PubMed Central

    Pucheta-Martinez, Encarna; D’Amelio, Nicola; Lelli, Moreno; Martinez-Torrecuadrada, Jorge L.; Sudol, Marius; Saladino, Giorgio; Gervasio, Francesco Luigi

    2016-01-01

    WW domains are small domains present in many human proteins with a wide array of functions and acting through the recognition of proline-rich sequences. The WW domain belonging to polyglutamine tract-binding protein 1 (PQBP1) is of particular interest due to its direct involvement in several X chromosome-linked intellectual disabilities, including Golabi-Ito-Hall (GIH) syndrome, where a single point mutation (Y65C) correlates with the development of the disease. The mutant cannot bind to its natural ligand WBP11, which regulates mRNA processing. In this work we use high-field high-resolution NMR and enhanced sampling molecular dynamics simulations to gain insight into the molecular causes the disease. We find that the wild type protein is partially unfolded exchanging among multiple beta-strand-like conformations in solution. The Y65C mutation further destabilizes the residual fold and primes the protein for the formation of a disulphide bridge, which could be at the origin of the loss of function. PMID:27456546

  18. Protein folding. Translational tuning optimizes nascent protein folding in cells.

    PubMed

    Kim, Soo Jung; Yoon, Jae Seok; Shishido, Hideki; Yang, Zhongying; Rooney, LeeAnn A; Barral, Jose M; Skach, William R

    2015-04-24

    In cells, biosynthetic machinery coordinates protein synthesis and folding to optimize efficiency and minimize off-pathway outcomes. However, it has been difficult to delineate experimentally the mechanisms responsible. Using fluorescence resonance energy transfer, we studied cotranslational folding of the first nucleotide-binding domain from the cystic fibrosis transmembrane conductance regulator. During synthesis, folding occurred discretely via sequential compaction of N-terminal, α-helical, and α/β-core subdomains. Moreover, the timing of these events was critical; premature α-subdomain folding prevented subsequent core formation. This process was facilitated by modulating intrinsic folding propensity in three distinct ways: delaying α-subdomain compaction, facilitating β-strand intercalation, and optimizing translation kinetics via codon usage. Thus, de novo folding is translationally tuned by an integrated cellular response that shapes the cotranslational folding landscape at critical stages of synthesis. PMID:25908822

  19. HLA Preferences for Conserved Epitopes: A Potential Mechanism for Hepatitis C Clearance

    PubMed Central

    Rao, Xiangyu; Hoof, Ilka; van Baarle, Debbie; Keşmir, Can; Textor, Johannes

    2015-01-01

    Hepatitis C virus (HCV) infections affect more than 170 million people worldwide. Most of these individuals are chronically infected, but some clear the infection rapidly. Host factors seem to play a key role in HCV clearance, among them are the human leukocyte antigen (HLA) class I molecules. Certain HLA molecules, e.g., B*27 and B*57, are associated with viral clearance. To identify potential mechanisms for these associations, we assess epitope distribution differences between HLA molecules using experimentally verified and in silico predicted HCV epitopes. Specifically, we show that the NS5B protein harbors the largest fraction of conserved regions among all HCV proteins. Such conserved regions could be good targets for cytotoxic T-cell (CTL) responses. We find that the protective HLA-B*27 molecule preferentially presents cytotoxic T-cell (CTL) epitopes from NS5B and, in general, presents the most strongly conserved epitopes among the 23 HLA molecules analyzed. In contrast, HLA molecules known to be associated with HCV persistence do not have similar preferences and appear to target the variable P7 protein. Overall, our analysis suggests that by targeting highly constrained – and thereby conserved – regions of HCV, the protective HLA molecule HLA-B*27 reduces the ability of HCV to escape the cytotoxic T-cell response of the host. For visualizing the distribution of both experimentally verified and predicted epitopes across the HCV genome, we created the HCV epitope browser, which is available at theory.bio.uu.nl/ucqi/hcv. PMID:26579127

  20. Evolutionary Conservation of a GPCR-Independent Mechanism of Trimeric G Protein Activation

    PubMed Central

    Coleman, Brantley D.; Marivin, Arthur; Parag-Sharma, Kshitij; DiGiacomo, Vincent; Kim, Seongseop; Pepper, Judy S.; Casler, Jason; Nguyen, Lien T.; Koelle, Michael R.; Garcia-Marcos, Mikel

    2016-01-01

    Trimeric G protein signaling is a fundamental mechanism of cellular communication in eukaryotes. The core of this mechanism consists of activation of G proteins by the guanine-nucleotide exchange factor (GEF) activity of G protein coupled receptors. However, the duration and amplitude of G protein-mediated signaling are controlled by a complex network of accessory proteins that appeared and diversified during evolution. Among them, nonreceptor proteins with GEF activity are the least characterized. We recently found that proteins of the ccdc88 family possess a Gα-binding and activating (GBA) motif that confers GEF activity and regulates mammalian cell behavior. A sequence similarity-based search revealed that ccdc88 genes are highly conserved across metazoa but the GBA motif is absent in most invertebrates. This prompted us to investigate whether the GBA motif is present in other nonreceptor proteins in invertebrates. An unbiased bioinformatics search in Caenorhabditis elegans identified GBAS-1 (GBA and SPK domain containing-1) as a GBA motif-containing protein with homologs only in closely related worm species. We demonstrate that GBAS-1 has GEF activity for the nematode G protein GOA-1 and that the two proteins are coexpressed in many cells of living worms. Furthermore, we show that GBAS-1 can activate mammalian Gα-subunits and provide structural insights into the evolutionarily conserved determinants of the GBA–G protein interface. These results demonstrate that the GBA motif is a functional GEF module conserved among highly divergent proteins across evolution, indicating that the GBA-Gα binding mode is strongly constrained under selective pressure to mediate receptor-independent G protein activation in metazoans. PMID:26659249

  1. Evolutionary Conservation of a GPCR-Independent Mechanism of Trimeric G Protein Activation.

    PubMed

    Coleman, Brantley D; Marivin, Arthur; Parag-Sharma, Kshitij; DiGiacomo, Vincent; Kim, Seongseop; Pepper, Judy S; Casler, Jason; Nguyen, Lien T; Koelle, Michael R; Garcia-Marcos, Mikel

    2016-03-01

    Trimeric G protein signaling is a fundamental mechanism of cellular communication in eukaryotes. The core of this mechanism consists of activation of G proteins by the guanine-nucleotide exchange factor (GEF) activity of G protein coupled receptors. However, the duration and amplitude of G protein-mediated signaling are controlled by a complex network of accessory proteins that appeared and diversified during evolution. Among them, nonreceptor proteins with GEF activity are the least characterized. We recently found that proteins of the ccdc88 family possess a Gα-binding and activating (GBA) motif that confers GEF activity and regulates mammalian cell behavior. A sequence similarity-based search revealed that ccdc88 genes are highly conserved across metazoa but the GBA motif is absent in most invertebrates. This prompted us to investigate whether the GBA motif is present in other nonreceptor proteins in invertebrates. An unbiased bioinformatics search in Caenorhabditis elegans identified GBAS-1 (GBA and SPK domain containing-1) as a GBA motif-containing protein with homologs only in closely related worm species. We demonstrate that GBAS-1 has GEF activity for the nematode G protein GOA-1 and that the two proteins are coexpressed in many cells of living worms. Furthermore, we show that GBAS-1 can activate mammalian Gα-subunits and provide structural insights into the evolutionarily conserved determinants of the GBA-G protein interface. These results demonstrate that the GBA motif is a functional GEF module conserved among highly divergent proteins across evolution, indicating that the GBA-Gα binding mode is strongly constrained under selective pressure to mediate receptor-independent G protein activation in metazoans. PMID:26659249

  2. Conservation Laws for Coupled Hydro-mechanical Processes in Unsaturated Porous Media: Theory and Implementation

    SciTech Connect

    Borja, R I; White, J A

    2010-02-19

    We develop conservation laws for coupled hydro-mechanical processes in unsaturated porous media using three-phase continuum mixture theory. From the first law of thermodynamics, we identify energy-conjugate variables for constitutive modeling at macroscopic scale. Energy conjugate expressions identified relate a certain measure of effective stress to the deformation of the solid matrix, the degree of saturation to the matrix suction, the pressure in each constituent phase to the corresponding intrinsic volume change of this phase, and the seepage forces to the corresponding pressure gradients. We then develop strong and weak forms of boundary-value problems relevant for 3D finite element modeling of coupled hydro-mechanical processes in unsaturated porous media. The paper highlights a 3D numerical example illustrating the advances in the solution of large-scale coupled finite element systems, as well as the challenges in developing more predictive tools satisfying the basic conservation laws and the observed constitutive responses for unsaturated porous materials.

  3. A conserved mechanism of TOR-dependent RCK-mediated mRNA degradation regulates autophagy

    PubMed Central

    Park, Yoon-Dong; Qiu, Jin; Vural, Ali; Zhang, Nannan; Waterman, Scott R.; Blewett, Nathan H.; Myers, Timothy G.; Maraia, Richard J.; Kehrl, John H.; Uzel, Gulbu; Klionsky, Daniel J.; Williamson, Peter R.

    2015-01-01

    Autophagy is an essential eukaryotic pathway requiring tight regulation to maintain homeostasis and preclude disease. Using yeast and mammalian cells, we report a conserved mechanism of autophagy regulation by RNA helicase RCK family members in association with the decapping enzyme Dcp2. Under nutrient-replete conditions, Dcp2 undergoes TOR-dependent phosphorylation and associates with RCK members to form a complex with autophagy-related (ATG) mRNA transcripts, leading to decapping, degradation and autophagy suppression. Simultaneous with the induction of ATG mRNA synthesis, starvation reverses the process, facilitating ATG mRNA accumulation and autophagy induction. This conserved post-transcriptional mechanism modulates fungal virulence and the mammalian inflammasome, the latter providing mechanistic insight into autoimmunity reported in a patient with a PIK3CD/p110δ gain-of-function mutation. We propose a dynamic model wherein RCK family members, in conjunction with Dcp2, function in controlling ATG mRNA stability to govern autophagy, which in turn modulates vital cellular processes affecting inflammation and microbial pathogenesis. PMID:26098573

  4. Predictive Computational Modeling of Chromatin Folding

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    di Pierro, Miichele; Zhang, Bin; Wolynes, Peter J.; Onuchic, Jose N.

    In vivo, the human genome folds into well-determined and conserved three-dimensional structures. The mechanism driving the folding process remains unknown. We report a theoretical model (MiChroM) for chromatin derived by using the maximum entropy principle. The proposed model allows Molecular Dynamics simulations of the genome using as input the classification of loci into chromatin types and the presence of binding sites of loop forming protein CTCF. The model was trained to reproduce the Hi-C map of chromosome 10 of human lymphoblastoid cells. With no additional tuning the model was able to predict accurately the Hi-C maps of chromosomes 1-22 for the same cell line. Simulations show unknotted chromosomes, phase separation of chromatin types and a preference of chromatin of type A to sit at the periphery of the chromosomes.

  5. Exploring the symmetry, structure, and self-assembly mechanism of a gigantic seven-fold symmetric {Pd₈₄} wheel.

    PubMed

    Scullion, Rachel A; Surman, Andrew J; Xu, Feng; Mathieson, Jennifer S; Long, De-Liang; Haso, Fadi; Liu, Tianbo; Cronin, Leroy

    2014-09-15

    The symmetry, structure and formation mechanism of the structurally self-complementary {Pd84} = [Pd84O42(PO4)42(CH3CO2)28](70-) wheel is explored. Not only does the symmetry give rise to a non-closest packed structure, the mechanism of the wheel formation is proposed to depend on the delicate balance between reaction conditions. We achieve the resolution of gigantic polyoxopalladate species through electrophoresis and size-exclusion chromatography, the latter has been used in conjunction with electrospray mass spectrometry to probe the formation of the ring, which was found to proceed by the stepwise aggregation of {Pd6}(-) = [Pd6O4(CH3CO2)2(PO4)3Na(6-n)H(n)](-) building blocks. Furthermore, the higher-order assembly of these clusters into hollow blackberry structures of around 50 nm has been observed using dynamic and static light scattering. PMID:25044792

  6. A New Folding Kinetic Mechanism for Human Transthyretin and the Influence of the Amyloidogenic V30M Mutation.

    PubMed

    Jesus, Catarina S H; Almeida, Zaida L; Vaz, Daniela C; Faria, Tiago Q; Brito, Rui M M

    2016-01-01

    Protein aggregation into insoluble amyloid fibrils is the hallmark of several neurodegenerative diseases, chief among them Alzheimer's and Parkinson's. Although caused by different proteins, these pathologies share some basic molecular mechanisms with familial amyloidotic polyneuropathy (FAP), a rare hereditary neuropathy caused by amyloid formation and deposition by transthyretin (TTR) in the peripheral and autonomic nervous systems. Among the amyloidogenic TTR mutations known, V30M-TTR is the most common in FAP. TTR amyloidogenesis (ATTR) is triggered by tetramer dissociation, followed by partial unfolding and aggregation of the low conformational stability monomers formed. Thus, tetramer dissociation kinetics, monomer conformational stability and competition between refolding and aggregation pathways do play a critical role in ATTR. Here, we propose a new model to analyze the refolding kinetics of WT-TTR and V30M-TTR, showing that at pH and protein concentrations close to physiological, a two-step mechanism with a unimolecular first step followed by a second-order second step adjusts well to the experimental data. Interestingly, although sharing the same kinetic mechanism, V30M-TTR refolds at a much slower rate than WT-TTR, a feature that may favor the formation of transient species leading to kinetic partition into amyloidogenic pathways and, thus, significantly increasing the probability of amyloid formation in vivo. PMID:27589730

  7. Graphene folding on flat substrates

    SciTech Connect

    Chen, Xiaoming; Zhao, Yadong; Ke, Changhong; Zhang, Liuyang; Wang, Xianqiao

    2014-10-28

    We present a combined experimental-theoretical study of graphene folding on flat substrates. The structure and deformation of the folded graphene sheet are experimentally characterized by atomic force microscopy. The local graphene folding behaviors are interpreted based on nonlinear continuum mechanics modeling and molecular dynamics simulations. Our study on self-folding of a trilayer graphene sheet reports a bending stiffness of about 6.57 eV, which is about four times the reported values for monolayer graphene. Our results reveal that an intriguing free sliding phenomenon occurs at the interlayer van der Waals interfaces during the graphene folding process. This work demonstrates that it is a plausible venue to quantify the bending stiffness of graphene based on its self-folding conformation on flat substrates. The findings reported in this work are useful to a better understanding of the mechanical properties of graphene and in the pursuit of its applications.

  8. Anisotropy of Magnetic Susceptibility: a petrofrabric tool for understanding mechanisms of fold and thrust belt evolution. Application in Malargüe FTB, Argentina

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Branellec, Matthieu; Callot, Jean Paul; Aubourg, Charles; Nivière, Bertrand; Ringenbach, Jean Claude

    2013-04-01

    In fold and thrust belts (FTB), sedimentary beds are folded and faulted but rocks do not always show evidence of strong internal deformation. Nevertheless, several studies have demonstrated that a weak internal deformation (layer parallel shortening) can be recorded at the matrix scale before any macroscopic deformation. The Anisotropy of Magnetic susceptibility (AMS) provides information about the preferred orientation of billions of magnetic minerals. It enables the definition of a magnetic fabric, which may be visualized as an ellipsoid with principal axes K1 ≥ K2 ≥ K3. Basic elements of a magnetic fabric are the magnetic foliation (K1-K2 plane) and the magnetic lineation (K1 axe), when they are statistically defined. Both are related to strain-controlled petrofrabric. The Neuquén Basin is a wide intracratonic sag basin with complex and polyphased/diachronic evolution. The Pacific subduction and south Atlantic opening were the mechanisms controlling the large scale geodynamic framework. By late Triassic times, continental scale extension initiated fault-related narrow rift depocenters which later evolved toward a sag basin from middle Jurassic to upper Cretaceous. At that time, the basin started to record the compressive stress regime from the Pacific subduction. Three pulses of compressive deformation (Cretaceous, Paleogene and Miocene) are recorded in this retro-arc foreland setting. Approximately 300 samples have been collected from 30 sites in terrigenous rocks located along three cross sections from foothills to uplifted foreland area in Malargüe FTB. We mainly sample Kimmeridgian red beds of the Tordillo formation, Tithonian shales from the Vaca Muerta Fm, and late cretaceous red beds of the Neuquén Group. AMS fabrics are used as a proxy to measure accumulated microscopic finite strain and compares it with mesoscale (fractures) and macroscale structures (faults, folds…). This multi-scaled approach helps in defining a kinematic scenario for Malarg

  9. Fry and Rf/ϕ strain methods constraints and fold transection mechanisms in the NW Iberian Variscides

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Soares, A.; Dias, R.

    2015-10-01

    Apúlia is a small Portuguese sector in NW of Central-Iberian Zone, that have been deformed in a non-coaxial sinistral transpressive regime during the first and main Variscan tectonic event (D1). This deformation give rise to a major NW-SE anticline, where the S1 N-S cleavage transect the inverted short NE limb; two and three-dimensional strains analysis have been done in the low metamorphic grade Ordovician quartzites of this limb using Fry and Rf/ϕ methods. The data show that most deformation was due to intergranular deformation mechanisms. The intragranular deformation leading to the distortion of strain markers and to cleavage was very incipient and a latter event in the D1 phase. The apparent plane strain ellipsoids (if no volume change is assumed) related to the intragranular mechanisms contrast with the more prolate strain ellipsoids related to the bulk deformation of Apúlia Quartzites. This constrictional bulk strain fabrics are characteristic of the sinistral transpressive regimes dominant in the northern sectors of the Central-Iberian Zone.

  10. Molecular dynamics studies of protein folding and aggregation

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Ding, Feng

    This thesis applies molecular dynamics simulations and statistical mechanics to study: (i) protein folding; and (ii) protein aggregation. Most small proteins fold into their native states via a first-order-like phase transition with a major free energy barrier between the folded and unfolded states. A set of protein conformations corresponding to the free energy barrier, Delta G >> kBT, are the folding transition state ensemble (TSE). Due to their evasive nature, TSE conformations are hard to capture (probability ∝ exp(-DeltaG/k BT)) and characterize. A coarse-grained discrete molecular dynamics model with realistic steric constraints is constructed to reproduce the experimentally observed two-state folding thermodynamics. A kinetic approach is proposed to identify the folding TSE. A specific set of contacts, common to the TSE conformations, is identified as the folding nuclei which are necessary to be formed in order for the protein to fold. Interestingly, the amino acids at the site of the identified folding nuclei are highly conserved for homologous proteins sharing the same structures. Such conservation suggests that amino acids that are important for folding kinetics are under selective pressure to be preserved during the course of molecular evolution. In addition, studies of the conformations close to the transition states uncover the importance of topology in the construction of order parameter for protein folding transition. Misfolded proteins often form insoluble aggregates, amyloid fibrils, that deposit in the extracellular space and lead to a type of disease known as amyloidosis. Due to its insoluble and non-crystalline nature, the aggregation structure and, thus the aggregation mechanism, has yet to be uncovered. Discrete molecular dynamics studies reveal an aggregate structure with the same structural signatures as in experimental observations and show a nucleation aggregation scenario. The simulations also suggest a generic aggregation mechanism

  11. Imprint of Ancient Evolution on rRNA Folding.

    PubMed

    Lanier, Kathryn A; Athavale, Shreyas S; Petrov, Anton S; Wartell, Roger; Williams, Loren Dean

    2016-08-23

    In a model describing the origin and evolution of the translation system, ribosomal RNA (rRNA) grew in size by accretion [Petrov, A. S., et al. (2015) History of the Ribosome and the Origin of Translation. Proc. Natl. Acad. Sci. U.S.A. 112, 15396-15401]. Large rRNAs were built up by iterative incorporation and encasement of small folded RNAs, in analogy with addition of new LEGOs onto the surface of a preexisting LEGO assembly. In this model, rRNA robustness in folding arises from inherited autonomy of local folding. We propose that rRNAs can be decomposed at various granularities, retaining folding mechanism and folding competence. To test these predictions, we disassembled Domain III of the large ribosomal subunit (LSU). We determined whether local rRNA structure, stability, and folding pathways are autonomous. Thermal melting, chemical footprinting, and circular dichroism were used to infer rules that govern folding of rRNA. We deconstructed Domain III of the LSU rRNA by mapping out its complex multistep melting pathway. We studied Domain III and two equal-size "sub-Domains" of Domain III. The combined results are consistent with a model in which melting transitions of Domain III are conserved upon cleavage into sub-Domains. Each of the eight melting transitions of Domain III corresponds in Tm and ΔH with a transition observed in one of the two isolated sub-Domains. The results support a model in which structure, stability, and folding mechanisms are dominated by local interactions and are unaffected by separation of the sub-Domains. Domain III rRNA is distinct from RNAs that form long-range cooperative interaction networks at early stages of folding or that do not fold reversibly. PMID:27428664

  12. Conserved mechanisms of microtubule-stimulated ADP release, ATP binding, and force generation in transport kinesins

    PubMed Central

    Atherton, Joseph; Farabella, Irene; Yu, I-Mei; Rosenfeld, Steven S; Houdusse, Anne; Topf, Maya; Moores, Carolyn A

    2014-01-01

    Kinesins are a superfamily of microtubule-based ATP-powered motors, important for multiple, essential cellular functions. How microtubule binding stimulates their ATPase and controls force generation is not understood. To address this fundamental question, we visualized microtubule-bound kinesin-1 and kinesin-3 motor domains at multiple steps in their ATPase cycles—including their nucleotide-free states—at ∼7 Å resolution using cryo-electron microscopy. In both motors, microtubule binding promotes ordered conformations of conserved loops that stimulate ADP release, enhance microtubule affinity and prime the catalytic site for ATP binding. ATP binding causes only small shifts of these nucleotide-coordinating loops but induces large conformational changes elsewhere that allow force generation and neck linker docking towards the microtubule plus end. Family-specific differences across the kinesin–microtubule interface account for the distinctive properties of each motor. Our data thus provide evidence for a conserved ATP-driven mechanism for kinesins and reveal the critical mechanistic contribution of the microtubule interface. DOI: http://dx.doi.org/10.7554/eLife.03680.001 PMID:25209998

  13. Mechanical study of the Chartreuse Fold-and-Thrust Belt: relationships between fluids overpressure and decollement within the Toarcian source-rock

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Berthelon, Josselin; Sassi, William; Burov, Evgueni

    2016-04-01

    Many source-rocks are shale and constitute potential detachment levels in Fold-and-Thrust Belts (FTB): the toarcian Schistes-Cartons in the French Chartreuse FTB for example. Their mechanical properties can change during their burial and thermal maturation, as for example when large amount of hydrocarbon fluids are generated. A structural reconstruction of the Chartreuse FTB geo-history places the Toarcian Formation as the major decollement horizon. In this work, a mechanical analysis integrating the fluids overpressuring development is proposed to discuss on the validity of the structural interpretation. At first, an analogue of the Chartreuse Toarcian Fm, the albanian Posidonia Schist, is documented as it can provide insights on its initial properties and composition of its kerogen content. Laboratory characterisation documents the vertical evolution of the mineralogical, geochemical and mechanical parameters of this potential decollement layer. These physical parameters (i.e. Total Organic Carbon (TOC), porosity/permeability relationship, friction coefficient) are used to address overpressure buildup in the frontal part of the Chartreuse FTB with TEMISFlow Arctem Basin modelling approach (Faille et al, 2014) and the structural emplacement of the Chartreuse thrust units using the FLAMAR thermo-mechanical model (Burov et al, 2014). The hydro-mechanical modeling results highlight the calendar, distribution and magnitude of the overpressure that developed within the source-rock in the footwall of a simple fault-bend fold structure localized in the frontal part of the Chartreuse FTB. Several key geological conditions are required to create an overpressure able to fracture the shale-rocks and induce a significant change in the rheological behaviour: high TOC, low permeability, favourable structural evolution. These models highlight the importance of modeling the impact of a diffuse natural hydraulic fracturing to explain fluids propagation toward the foreland within

  14. A Disorder-Induced Domino-Like Destabilization Mechanism Governs the Folding and Functional Dynamics of the Repeat Protein IκBα

    PubMed Central

    Sivanandan, Srinivasan; Naganathan, Athi N.

    2013-01-01

    The stability of the repeat protein IκBα, a transcriptional inhibitor in mammalian cells, is critical in the functioning of the NF-κB signaling module implicated in an array of cellular processes, including cell growth, disease, immunity and apoptosis. Structurally, IκBα is complex, with both ordered and disordered regions, thus posing a challenge to the available computational protocols to model its conformational behavior. Here, we introduce a simple procedure to model disorder in systems that undergo binding-induced folding that involves modulation of the contact map guided by equilibrium experimental observables in combination with an Ising-like Wako-Saitô-Muñoz-Eaton model. This one-step procedure alone is able to reproduce a variety of experimental observables, including ensemble thermodynamics (scanning calorimetry, pre-transitions, m-values) and kinetics (roll-over in chevron plot, intermediates and their identity), and is consistent with hydrogen-deuterium exchange measurements. We further capture the intricate distance-dynamics between the domains as measured by single-molecule FRET by combining the model predictions with simple polymer physics arguments. Our results reveal a unique mechanism at work in IκBα folding, wherein disorder in one domain initiates a domino-like effect partially destabilizing neighboring domains, thus highlighting the effect of symmetry-breaking at the level of primary sequences. The offshoot is a multi-state and a dynamic conformational landscape that is populated by increasingly partially folded ensembles upon destabilization. Our results provide, in a straightforward fashion, a rationale to the promiscuous binding and short intracellular half-life of IκBα evolutionarily engineered into it through repeats with variable stabilities and expand the functional repertoire of disordered regions in proteins. PMID:24367251

  15. New N-Acetyltransferase Fold in the Structure and Mechanism of the Phosphonate Biosynthetic Enzyme FrbF

    SciTech Connect

    Bae, Brian; Cobb, Ryan E.; DeSieno, Matthew A.; Zhao, Huimin; Nair, Satish K.

    2015-10-15

    The enzyme FrbF from Streptomyces rubellomurinus has attracted significant attention due to its role in the biosynthesis of the antimalarial phosphonate FR-900098. The enzyme catalyzes acetyl transfer onto the hydroxamate of the FR-900098 precursors cytidine 5'-monophosphate-3-aminopropylphosphonate and cytidine 5'-monophosphate-N-hydroxy-3-aminopropylphosphonate. Despite the established function as a bona fide N-acetyltransferase, FrbF shows no sequence similarity to any member of the GCN5-like N-acetyltransferase (GNAT) superfamily. Here, we present the 2.0 {angstrom} resolution crystal structure of FrbF in complex with acetyl-CoA, which demonstrates a unique architecture that is distinct from those of canonical GNAT-like acetyltransferases. We also utilized the co-crystal structure to guide structure-function studies that identified the roles of putative active site residues in the acetyltransferase mechanism. The combined biochemical and structural analyses of FrbF provide insights into this previously uncharacterized family of N-acetyltransferases and also provide a molecular framework toward the production of novel N-acyl derivatives of FR-900098.

  16. New N-acetyltransferase fold in the structure and mechanism of the phosphonate biosynthetic enzyme FrbF.

    PubMed

    Bae, Brian; Cobb, Ryan E; DeSieno, Matthew A; Zhao, Huimin; Nair, Satish K

    2011-10-14

    The enzyme FrbF from Streptomyces rubellomurinus has attracted significant attention due to its role in the biosynthesis of the antimalarial phosphonate FR-900098. The enzyme catalyzes acetyl transfer onto the hydroxamate of the FR-900098 precursors cytidine 5'-monophosphate-3-aminopropylphosphonate and cytidine 5'-monophosphate-N-hydroxy-3-aminopropylphosphonate. Despite the established function as a bona fide N-acetyltransferase, FrbF shows no sequence similarity to any member of the GCN5-like N-acetyltransferase (GNAT) superfamily. Here, we present the 2.0 Å resolution crystal structure of FrbF in complex with acetyl-CoA, which demonstrates a unique architecture that is distinct from those of canonical GNAT-like acetyltransferases. We also utilized the co-crystal structure to guide structure-function studies that identified the roles of putative active site residues in the acetyltransferase mechanism. The combined biochemical and structural analyses of FrbF provide insights into this previously uncharacterized family of N-acetyltransferases and also provide a molecular framework toward the production of novel N-acyl derivatives of FR-900098. PMID:21865168

  17. Statistics of conserved quantities in mechanically stable packings of frictionless disks above jamming

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Wu, Yegang; Teitel, S.

    2015-02-01

    We numerically simulate mechanically stable packings of soft-core, frictionless, bidisperse disks in two dimensions, above the jamming packing fraction ϕJ. For configurations with a fixed isotropic global stress tensor, we compute the averages, variances, and correlations of conserved quantities (stress ΓC, force-tile area AC, Voronoi volume VC, number of particles NC, and number of small particles Ns C) on compact subclusters of particles C , as a function of the cluster size and the global system stress. We find several significant differences depending on whether the cluster C is defined by a fixed radius R or a fixed number of particles M . We comment on the implications of our findings for maximum entropy models of jammed packings.

  18. Evolutionarily conserved mechanisms for the selection and maintenance of behavioural activity

    PubMed Central

    Fiore, Vincenzo G.; Dolan, Raymond J.; Strausfeld, Nicholas J.; Hirth, Frank

    2015-01-01

    Survival and reproduction entail the selection of adaptive behavioural repertoires. This selection manifests as phylogenetically acquired activities that depend on evolved nervous system circuitries. Lorenz and Tinbergen already postulated that heritable behaviours and their reliable performance are specified by genetically determined programs. Here we compare the functional anatomy of the insect central complex and vertebrate basal ganglia to illustrate their role in mediating selection and maintenance of adaptive behaviours. Comparative analyses reveal that central complex and basal ganglia circuitries share comparable lineage relationships within clusters of functionally integrated neurons. These clusters are specified by genetic mechanisms that link birth time and order to their neuronal identities and functions. Their subsequent connections and associated functions are characterized by similar mechanisms that implement dimensionality reduction and transition through attractor states, whereby spatially organized parallel-projecting loops integrate and convey sensorimotor representations that select and maintain behavioural activity. In both taxa, these neural systems are modulated by dopamine signalling that also mediates memory-like processes. The multiplicity of similarities between central complex and basal ganglia suggests evolutionarily conserved computational mechanisms for action selection. We speculate that these may have originated from ancestral ground pattern circuitries present in the brain of the last common ancestor of insects and vertebrates. PMID:26554043

  19. Comparative sequence analysis suggests a conserved gating mechanism for TRP channels

    PubMed Central

    Palovcak, Eugene; Delemotte, Lucie; Klein, Michael L.

    2015-01-01

    The transient receptor potential (TRP) channel superfamily plays a central role in transducing diverse sensory stimuli in eukaryotes. Although dissimilar in sequence and domain organization, all known TRP channels act as polymodal cellular sensors and form tetrameric assemblies similar to those of their distant relatives, the voltage-gated potassium (Kv) channels. Here, we investigated the related questions of whether the allosteric mechanism underlying polymodal gating is common to all TRP channels, and how this mechanism differs from that underpinning Kv channel voltage sensitivity. To provide insight into these questions, we performed comparative sequence analysis on large, comprehensive ensembles of TRP and Kv channel sequences, contextualizing the patterns of conservation and correlation observed in the TRP channel sequences in light of the well-studied Kv channels. We report sequence features that are specific to TRP channels and, based on insight from recent TRPV1 structures, we suggest a model of TRP channel gating that differs substantially from the one mediating voltage sensitivity in Kv channels. The common mechanism underlying polymodal gating involves the displacement of a defect in the H-bond network of S6 that changes the orientation of the pore-lining residues at the hydrophobic gate. PMID:26078053

  20. Inter-kingdom conservation of mechanism of nonsense-mediated mRNA decay

    PubMed Central

    Kerényi, Zoltán; Mérai, Zsuzsanna; Hiripi, László; Benkovics, Anna; Gyula, Péter; Lacomme, Christophe; Barta, Endre; Nagy, Ferenc; Silhavy, Dániel

    2008-01-01

    Nonsense-mediated mRNA decay (NMD) is a quality control system that degrades mRNAs containing premature termination codons. Although NMD is well characterized in yeast and mammals, plant NMD is poorly understood. We have undertaken the functional dissection of NMD pathways in plants. Using an approach that allows rapid identification of plant NMD trans factors, we demonstrated that two plant NMD pathways coexist, one eliminates mRNAs with long 3′UTRs, whereas a distinct pathway degrades mRNAs harbouring 3′UTR-located introns. We showed that UPF1, UPF2 and SMG-7 are involved in both plant NMD pathways, whereas Mago and Y14 are required only for intron-based NMD. The molecular mechanism of long 3′UTR-based plant NMD resembled yeast NMD, whereas the intron-based NMD was similar to mammalian NMD, suggesting that both pathways are evolutionarily conserved. Interestingly, the SMG-7 NMD component is targeted by NMD, suggesting that plant NMD is autoregulated. We propose that a complex, autoregulated NMD mechanism operated in stem eukaryotes, and that despite aspect of the mechanism being simplified in different lineages, feedback regulation was retained in all kingdoms. PMID:18451801

  1. Evolutionarily conserved mechanisms for the selection and maintenance of behavioural activity.

    PubMed

    Fiore, Vincenzo G; Dolan, Raymond J; Strausfeld, Nicholas J; Hirth, Frank

    2015-12-19

    Survival and reproduction entail the selection of adaptive behavioural repertoires. This selection manifests as phylogenetically acquired activities that depend on evolved nervous system circuitries. Lorenz and Tinbergen already postulated that heritable behaviours and their reliable performance are specified by genetically determined programs. Here we compare the functional anatomy of the insect central complex and vertebrate basal ganglia to illustrate their role in mediating selection and maintenance of adaptive behaviours. Comparative analyses reveal that central complex and basal ganglia circuitries share comparable lineage relationships within clusters of functionally integrated neurons. These clusters are specified by genetic mechanisms that link birth time and order to their neuronal identities and functions. Their subsequent connections and associated functions are characterized by similar mechanisms that implement dimensionality reduction and transition through attractor states, whereby spatially organized parallel-projecting loops integrate and convey sensorimotor representations that select and maintain behavioural activity. In both taxa, these neural systems are modulated by dopamine signalling that also mediates memory-like processes. The multiplicity of similarities between central complex and basal ganglia suggests evolutionarily conserved computational mechanisms for action selection. We speculate that these may have originated from ancestral ground pattern circuitries present in the brain of the last common ancestor of insects and vertebrates. PMID:26554043

  2. Conservative management of mechanical neck pain: systematic overview and meta-analysis.

    PubMed Central

    Aker, P. D.; Gross, A. R.; Goldsmith, C. H.; Peloso, P.

    1996-01-01

    OBJECTIVE: To review the efficacy of conservative management of mechanical neck disorders. METHODS: Published and unpublished reports were identified through computerised and manual searches of bibliographical databases, reference lists from primary articles, and letters to authors, agencies, foundations, and content experts. Selection criteria were applied to blinded articles, and selected articles were scored for methodological quality. Effect sizes were calculated from raw pain scores and combined by using meta-analytic techniques when appropriate. RESULTS: Twenty four randomised clinical trials met the selection criteria and were categorised by type of intervention: nine used manual treatments; 12 physical medicine methods; four drug treatment; and three education of patients (four trials investigated more than one form of intervention). The intervention strategies were summarised separately. Pooling of studies was considered only within each category. Five of the nine trials that used manual treatment in combination with other treatments were combined. One to four weeks after treatment the pooled effect size was -0.6 (95% confidence interval -0.9 to -0.4), equivalent to an improvement of 16 (6.9 to 23.1) points on a 100 point scale. Sensitivity analyses on study quality, chronicity, and data imputation did not alter this estimate. For other interventions, studies could not be combined to arrive at pooled estimates of effect. CONCLUSIONS: There is little information available from clinical trials to support many of the treatments for mechanical neck pain. In general, conservative interventions have not been studied in enough detail to assess efficacy or effectiveness adequately. PMID:8942688

  3. How do chaperonins fold protein?

    PubMed Central

    Motojima, Fumihiro

    2015-01-01

    Protein folding is a biological process that is essential for the proper functioning of proteins in all living organisms. In cells, many proteins require the assistance of molecular chaperones for their folding. Chaperonins belong to a class of molecular chaperones that have been extensively studied. However, the mechanism by which a chaperonin mediates the folding of proteins is still controversial. Denatured proteins are folded in the closed chaperonin cage, leading to the assumption that denatured proteins are completely encapsulated inside the chaperonin cage. In contrast to the assumption, we recently found that denatured protein interacts with hydrophobic residues at the subunit interfaces of the chaperonin, and partially protrude out of the cage. In this review, we will explain our recent results and introduce our model for the mechanism by which chaperonins accelerate protein folding, in view of recent findings.

  4. The prosegment catalyzes native folding of Plasmodium falciparum plasmepsin II.

    PubMed

    Jaafar, Ahmad Haniff; Xiao, Huogen; Dee, Derek R; Bryksa, Brian C; Bhaumik, Prasenjit; Yada, Rickey Y

    2016-10-01

    Plasmepsin II is a malarial pepsin-like aspartic protease produced as a zymogen containing an N-terminal prosegment domain that is removed during activation. Despite structural similarities between active plasmepsin II and pepsin, their prosegments adopt different conformations in the respective zymogens. In contrast to pepsinogen, the proplasmepsin II prosegment is 80 residues longer, contains a transmembrane region and is non-essential for recombinant expression in an active form, thus calling into question the prosegment's precise function. The present study examines the role of the prosegment in the folding mechanism of plasmepsin II. Both a shorter (residues 77-124) and a longer (residues 65-124) prosegment catalyze plasmepsin II folding at rates more than four orders of magnitude faster compared to folding without prosegment. Native plasmepsin II is kinetically trapped and requires the prosegment both to catalyze folding and to shift the folding equilibrium towards the native conformation. Thus, despite low sequence identity and distinct zymogen conformations, the folding landscapes of plasmepsin II and pepsin, both with and without prosegment, are qualitatively identical. These results imply a conserved and unusual feature of the pepsin-like protease topology that necessitates prosegment-assisted folding. PMID:27378574

  5. A conserved splicing mechanism of the LMNA gene controls premature aging.

    PubMed

    Lopez-Mejia, Isabel C; Vautrot, Valentin; De Toledo, Marion; Behm-Ansmant, Isabelle; Bourgeois, Cyril F; Navarro, Claire L; Osorio, Fernando G; Freije, José M P; Stévenin, James; De Sandre-Giovannoli, Annachiara; Lopez-Otin, Carlos; Lévy, Nicolas; Branlant, Christiane; Tazi, Jamal

    2011-12-01

    Hutchinson-Gilford progeria syndrome (HGPS) is a rare genetic disorder phenotypically characterized by many features of premature aging. Most cases of HGPS are due to a heterozygous silent mutation (c.1824C>T; p.Gly608Gly) that enhances the use of an internal 5' splice site (5'SS) in exon 11 of the LMNA pre-mRNA and leads to the production of a truncated protein (progerin) with a dominant negative effect. Here we show that HGPS mutation changes the accessibility of the 5'SS of LMNA exon 11 which is sequestered in a conserved RNA structure. Our results also reveal a regulatory role of a subset of serine-arginine (SR)-rich proteins, including serine-arginine rich splicing factor 1 (SRSF1) and SRSF6, on utilization of the 5'SS leading to lamin A or progerin production and a modulation of this regulation in the presence of the c.1824C>T mutation is shown directly on HGPS patient cells. Mutant mice carrying the equivalent mutation in the LMNA gene (c.1827C>T) also accumulate progerin and phenocopy the main cellular alterations and clinical defects of HGPS patients. RNAi-induced depletion of SRSF1 in the HGPS-like mouse embryonic fibroblasts (MEFs) allowed progerin reduction and dysmorphic nuclei phenotype correction, whereas SRSF6 depletion aggravated the HGPS-like MEF's phenotype. We demonstrate that changes in the splicing ratio between lamin A and progerin are key factors for lifespan since heterozygous mice harboring the mutation lived longer than homozygous littermates but less than the wild-type. Genetic and biochemical data together favor the view that physiological progerin production is under tight control of a conserved splicing mechanism to avoid precocious aging. PMID:21875900

  6. Enhancing conservation, ecosystem services, and local livelihoods through a wildlife premium mechanism.

    PubMed

    Dinerstein, Eric; Varma, Keshav; Wikramanayake, Eric; Powell, George; Lumpkin, Susan; Naidoo, Robin; Korchinsky, Mike; Del Valle, Christian; Lohani, Shubash; Seidensticker, John; Joldersma, Dirk; Lovejoy, Thomas; Kushlin, Andrey

    2013-02-01

    We propose the wildlife premium mechanism as an innovation to conserve endangered large vertebrates. The performance-based payment scheme would allow stakeholders in lower-income countries to generate revenue by recovering and maintaining threatened fauna that can also serve as umbrella species (i.e., species whose protection benefits other species with which they co-occur). There are 3 possible options for applying the premium: option 1, embed premiums in a carbon payment; option 2, link premiums to a related carbon payment, but as independent and legally separate transactions; option 3, link premiums to noncarbon payments for conserving ecosystem services (PES). Each option presents advantages, such as incentive payments to improve livelihoods of rural poor who reside in or near areas harboring umbrella species, and challenges, such as the establishment of a subnational carbon credit scheme. In Kenya, Peru, and Nepal pilot premium projects are now underway or being finalized that largely follow option 1. The Kasigau (Kenya) project is the first voluntary carbon credit project to win approval from the 2 leading groups sanctioning such protocols and has already sold carbon credits totaling over $1.2 million since June 2011. A portion of the earnings is divided among community landowners and projects that support community members and has added over 350 jobs to the local economy. All 3 projects involve extensive community management because they occur on lands where locals hold the title or have a long-term lease from the government. The monitoring, reporting, and verification required to make premium payments credible to investors include transparent methods for collecting data on key indices by trained community members and verification of their reporting by a biologist. A wildlife premium readiness fund would enable expansion of pilot programs needed to test options beyond those presented here. PMID:23181423

  7. Conservation and variation in the feeding mechanism of the spiny dogfish squalus acanthias

    PubMed

    Wilga; Motta

    1998-05-01

    Changes in the feeding mechanism with feeding behavior were investigated using high-speed video and electromyography to examine the kinematics and motor pattern of prey capture, manipulation and transport in the spiny dogfish Squalus acanthias (Squalidae: Squaliformes). In this study, Squalus acanthias used both suction and ram behaviors to capture and manipulate prey, while only suction was used to transport prey. The basic kinematic feeding sequence observed in other aquatic-feeding lower vertebrates is conserved in the spiny dogfish. Prey capture, bite manipulation and suction transport events are characterized by a common pattern of head movements and motor activity, but are distinguishable by differences in duration and relative timing. In general, capture events are longer in duration than manipulation and transport events, as found in other aquatic-feeding lower vertebrates. Numerous individual effects were found, indicating that individual sharks are capable of varying head movements and motor activity among successful feeding events. Upper jaw protrusion in the spiny dogfish is not restricted by its orbitostylic jaw suspension; rather, the upper jaw is protruded by 30 % of its head length, considerably more than in the lemon shark Negaprion brevirostris (Carcharhinidae: Carcharhiniformes) (18 %) with its hyostylic jaw suspension. One function of upper jaw protrusion is to assist in jaw closure by protruding the upper jaw as well as elevating the lower jaw to close the gape, thus decreasing the time to jaw closure. The mechanism of upper jaw protrusion was found to differ between squaliform and carcharhiniform sharks. Whereas the levator palatoquadrati muscle assists in retracting the upper jaw in the spiny dogfish, it assists in protruding the upper jaw in the lemon shark. This study represents the first comprehensive electromyographic and kinematic analysis of the feeding mechanism in a squaliform shark. PMID:9547315

  8. Limited cooperativity in protein folding.

    PubMed

    Muñoz, Victor; Campos, Luis A; Sadqi, Mourad

    2016-02-01

    Theory and simulations predict that the structural concert of protein folding reactions is relatively low. Experimentally, folding cooperativity has been difficult to study, but in recent years we have witnessed major advances. New analytical procedures in terms of conformational ensembles rather than discrete states, experimental techniques with improved time, structural, or single-molecule resolution, and combined thermodynamic and kinetic analysis of fast folding have contributed to demonstrate a general scenario of limited cooperativity in folding. Gradual structural disorder is already apparent on the unfolded and native states of slow, two-state folding proteins, and it greatly increases in magnitude for fast folding domains. These results demonstrate a direct link between how fast a single-domain protein folds and unfolds, and how cooperative (or structurally diverse) is its equilibrium unfolding process. Reducing cooperativity also destabilizes the native structure because it affects unfolding more than folding. We can thus define a continuous cooperativity scale that goes from the 'pliable' two-state character of slow folders to the gradual unfolding of one-state downhill, and eventually to intrinsically disordered proteins. The connection between gradual unfolding and intrinsic disorder is appealing because it suggests a conformational rheostat mechanism to explain the allosteric effects of folding coupled to binding. PMID:26845039

  9. Kinetics and Mechanism of Calcium Hydroxide Conversion into Calcium Alkoxides: Implications in Heritage Conservation Using Nanolimes.

    PubMed

    Rodriguez-Navarro, Carlos; Vettori, Irene; Ruiz-Agudo, Encarnacion

    2016-05-24

    Nanolimes are alcohol dispersions of Ca(OH)2 nanoparticles used in the conservation of cultural heritage. Although it was believed that Ca(OH)2 particles were inert when dispersed in short-chain alcohols, it has been recently shown that they can undergo transformation into calcium alkoxides. Little is known, however, about the mechanism and kinetics of such a phase transformation as well as its effect on the performance of nanolimes. Here we show that Ca(OH)2 particles formed after lime slaking react with ethanol and isopropanol and partially transform (fractional conversion, α up to 0.08) into calcium ethoxide and isopropoxide, respectively. The transformation shows Arrhenius behavior, with apparent activation energy Ea of 29 ± 4 and 37 ± 6 kJ mol(-1) for Ca-ethoxide and Ca-isopropoxide conversion, respectively. High resolution transmission electron microscopy analyses of reactant and product phases show that the alkoxides replace the crystalline structure of Ca(OH)2 along specific [hkl] directions, preserving the external hexagonal (platelike) morphology of the parent phase. Textural and kinetic results reveal that this pseudomorphic replacement involves a 3D diffusion-controlled deceleratory advancement of the reaction front. The results are consistent with an interface-coupled dissolution-precipitation replacement mechanism. Analysis of the carbonation of Ca(OH)2 particles with different degree of conversion into Ca-ethoxide (α up to 0.08) and Ca-isopropoxide (α up to 0.04) exposed to air (20 °C, 80% relative humidity) reveals that Ca-alkoxides significantly reduce the rate of transformation into cementing CaCO3 and induce the formation of metastable vaterite, as opposed to stable calcite which forms in untransformed Ca(OH)2 samples. Similar effects are obtained when a commercial nanolime partially transformed into Ca-ethoxide is subjected to carbonation. Such effects may hamper/delay the strengthening or consolidation effects of nanolimes, thus having

  10. From tetrapods to primates: conserved developmental mechanisms in diverging ecological adaptations.

    PubMed

    Aboitiz, Francisco; Montiel, Juan F

    2012-01-01

    Primates are endowed with a brain about twice the size that of a mammal with the same body size, and humans have the largest brain relative to body size of all animals. This increase in brain size may be related to the acquisition of higher cognitive skills that permitted more complex social interactions, the evolution of culture, and the eventual ability to manipulate the environment. Nevertheless, in its internal structure, the primate brain shares a very conserved design with other mammals, being covered by a six-layered neocortex that, although expands disproportionately to other brain components, it does so following relatively well-defined allometric trends. Thus, the most fundamental events generating the basic design of the primate and human brain took place before the appearance of the first primate-like animal. Presumably, the earliest mammals already displayed a brain morphology radically different from that of their ancestors and that of their sister group, the reptiles, being characterized by the presence of an incipient neocortex that underwent an explosive growth in subsequent mammal evolution. In this chapter, we propose an integrative hypothesis for the origin of the mammalian neocortex, by considering the developmental modifications, functional networks, and ecological adaptations involved in the generation of this structure during the cretaceous period. Subsequently, the expansion of the primate brain is proposed to have relied on the amplification of the same, or very similar, developmental mechanisms as those involved in its primary origins, even in different ecological settings. PMID:22230620

  11. Nuclear reorganisation and chromatin decondensation are conserved, but distinct, mechanisms linked to Hox gene activation.

    PubMed

    Morey, Céline; Da Silva, Nelly R; Perry, Paul; Bickmore, Wendy A

    2007-03-01

    The relocalisation of some genes to positions outside chromosome territories, and the visible decondensation or unfolding of interphase chromatin, are two striking facets of nuclear reorganisation linked to gene activation that have been assumed to be related to each other. Here, in a study of nuclear reorganisation around the Hoxd cluster, we suggest that this may not be the case. Despite its very different genomic environment from Hoxb, Hoxd also loops out from its chromosome territory, and unfolds, upon activation in differentiating embryonic stem (ES) cells and in the tailbud of the embryo. However, looping out and decondensation are not simply two different manifestations of the same underlying change in chromatin structure. We show that, in the limb bud of the embryonic day 9.5 embryo, where Hoxd is also activated, there is visible decondensation of chromatin but no detectable movement of the region out from the chromosome territory. During ES cell differentiation, decondensed alleles can also be found inside of chromosome territories, and loci that have looped out of the territories can appear to still be condensed. We conclude that evolutionarily conserved chromosome remodelling mechanisms, predating the duplication of mammalian Hox loci, underlie Hox regulation along the rostrocaudal embryonic axis. However, we suggest that separate modes of regulation can modify Hoxd chromatin in different ways in different developmental contexts. PMID:17251268

  12. Evaluation of management techniques to conserve water in a mechanical head wash blood removal system.

    PubMed

    Galloway, H O; Deotte, R E; Lawrence, T E

    2013-11-01

    This research objectively evaluated methods to conserve water in a mechanical beef head wash system. Digital images of pre-wash and post-wash beef heads were analyzed to quantify the percentage change in red saturation of the image, which was used as an objective measure of cleanliness. Three types of nozzles (fan, three-hole, venturi) and three water pressures (344, 516, 689kPa) were evaluated in a two-way treatment structure. An interaction (P=0.07) was observed between water pressure and nozzle type; the change in red saturation increased as pressure decreased for fan and three-hole nozzles which contrasted with venturi nozzles. The fan nozzle×516kPa pressure treatment used 25L of water per head washed and was used to evaluate the effect of three water temperatures (15, 38, 57°C). Water temperature did not impact (P=0.21) change in red saturation. Reducing water wastage and minimizing the use of heated water could have positive economic benefits to the beef processor. PMID:23793094

  13. An Evolutionarily-Conserved Mechanism of Calcium-Dependent Neurotoxicity in a Zebrafish Model of FASD

    PubMed Central

    Flentke, George R.; Klingler, Rebekah H.; Tanguay, Robert L.; Carvan, Michael J.; Smith, Susan M.

    2014-01-01

    Background Fetal Alcohol Spectrum Disorders (FASD) are a leading cause of neurodevelopmental disability. Non-human animal models offer novel insights into its underlying mechanisms. Although the developing zebrafish has great promise for FASD research, a significant challenge to its wider adoption is the paucity of clear, mechanistic parallels between its ethanol responses and those of non-piscine, established models. Inconsistencies in the published pharmodynamics for ethanol-exposed zebrafish, alongside the use of comparatively high ethanol doses, challenge the interpretation of this model’s clinical relevance. Methods To address these limitations, we developed a binge, single-exposure model of ethanol exposure in the early zebrafish embryo. Results Brief (3hr) ethanol exposure is sufficient to cause significant neural crest losses and craniofacial alterations, with peak vulnerability during neurogenesis and early somitogenesis. These losses are apoptotic, documented using TUNEL assay and secA5-YFP-reporter fish. Apoptosis is dose-dependent with an EC50 = 56.2mM ± 14.3mM ethanolint, a clinically-relevant value within the range producing apoptosis in chick and mouse neural crest. This apoptosis requires the calcium-dependent activation of CaMKII and recapitulates the well-described ethanol signaling mechanism in avian neural crest. Importantly, we resolve the existing confusion regarding zebrafish ethanol kinetics. We show that steady-state ethanol concentrations within both chorion-intact and dechorionated embryos are maintained at 35.7% ± 2.8% of ethanolext levels across the range from 50 to 300 mM ethanolext, a value consistent with several published reports. Equilibrium is rapid and complete within 5min of ethanol addition. Conclusions The calcium/CaMKII mechanism of ethanol's neurotoxicity is shared between an amniote (chick) and teleost fish, indicating this mechanism is evolutionarily conserved. Our data suggest that ethanolext concentrations greater

  14. A conserved genetic mechanism specifies deutocerebral appendage identity in insects and arachnids.

    PubMed

    Sharma, Prashant P; Tarazona, Oscar A; Lopez, Davys H; Schwager, Evelyn E; Cohn, Martin J; Wheeler, Ward C; Extavour, Cassandra G

    2015-06-01

    The segmental architecture of the arthropod head is one of the most controversial topics in the evolutionary developmental biology of arthropods. The deutocerebral (second) segment of the head is putatively homologous across Arthropoda, as inferred from the segmental distribution of the tripartite brain and the absence of Hox gene expression of this anterior-most, appendage-bearing segment. While this homology statement implies a putative common mechanism for differentiation of deutocerebral appendages across arthropods, experimental data for deutocerebral appendage fate specification are limited to winged insects. Mandibulates (hexapods, crustaceans and myriapods) bear a characteristic pair of antennae on the deutocerebral segment, whereas chelicerates (e.g. spiders, scorpions, harvestmen) bear the eponymous chelicerae. In such hexapods as the fruit fly, Drosophila melanogaster, and the cricket, Gryllus bimaculatus, cephalic appendages are differentiated from the thoracic appendages (legs) by the activity of the appendage patterning gene homothorax (hth). Here we show that embryonic RNA interference against hth in the harvestman Phalangium opilio results in homeonotic chelicera-to-leg transformations, and also in some cases pedipalp-to-leg transformations. In more strongly affected embryos, adjacent appendages undergo fusion and/or truncation, and legs display proximal defects, suggesting conservation of additional functions of hth in patterning the antero-posterior and proximo-distal appendage axes. Expression signal of anterior Hox genes labial, proboscipedia and Deformed is diminished, but not absent, in hth RNAi embryos, consistent with results previously obtained with the insect G. bimaculatus. Our results substantiate a deep homology across arthropods of the mechanism whereby cephalic appendages are differentiated from locomotory appendages. PMID:25948691

  15. A conserved genetic mechanism specifies deutocerebral appendage identity in insects and arachnids

    PubMed Central

    Sharma, Prashant P.; Tarazona, Oscar A.; Lopez, Davys H.; Schwager, Evelyn E.; Cohn, Martin J.; Wheeler, Ward C.; Extavour, Cassandra G.

    2015-01-01

    The segmental architecture of the arthropod head is one of the most controversial topics in the evolutionary developmental biology of arthropods. The deutocerebral (second) segment of the head is putatively homologous across Arthropoda, as inferred from the segmental distribution of the tripartite brain and the absence of Hox gene expression of this anterior-most, appendage-bearing segment. While this homology statement implies a putative common mechanism for differentiation of deutocerebral appendages across arthropods, experimental data for deutocerebral appendage fate specification are limited to winged insects. Mandibulates (hexapods, crustaceans and myriapods) bear a characteristic pair of antennae on the deutocerebral segment, whereas chelicerates (e.g. spiders, scorpions, harvestmen) bear the eponymous chelicerae. In such hexapods as the fruit fly, Drosophila melanogaster, and the cricket, Gryllus bimaculatus, cephalic appendages are differentiated from the thoracic appendages (legs) by the activity of the appendage patterning gene homothorax (hth). Here we show that embryonic RNA interference against hth in the harvestman Phalangium opilio results in homeonotic chelicera-to-leg transformations, and also in some cases pedipalp-to-leg transformations. In more strongly affected embryos, adjacent appendages undergo fusion and/or truncation, and legs display proximal defects, suggesting conservation of additional functions of hth in patterning the antero-posterior and proximo-distal appendage axes. Expression signal of anterior Hox genes labial, proboscipedia and Deformed is diminished, but not absent, in hth RNAi embryos, consistent with results previously obtained with the insect G. bimaculatus. Our results substantiate a deep homology across arthropods of the mechanism whereby cephalic appendages are differentiated from locomotory appendages. PMID:25948691

  16. The protein folding network

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Rao, Francesco; Caflisch, Amedeo

    2004-03-01

    Networks are everywhere. The conformation space of a 20-residue antiparallel beta-sheet peptide [1], sampled by molecular dynamics simulations, is mapped to a network. Conformations are nodes of the network, and the transitions between them are links. As previously found for the World-Wide Web as well as for social and biological networks , the conformation space contains highly connected hubs like the native state which is the most populated free energy basin. Furthermore, the network shows a hierarchical modularity [2] which is consistent with the funnel mechanism of folding [3] and is not observed for a random heteropolymer lacking a native state. Here we show that the conformation space network describes the free energy landscape without requiring projections into arbitrarily chosen reaction coordinates. The network analysis provides a basis for understanding the heterogeneity of the folding transition state and the existence of multiple pathways. [1] P. Ferrara and A. Caflisch, Folding simulations of a three-stranded antiparallel beta-sheet peptide, PNAS 97, 10780-10785 (2000). [2] Ravasz, E. and Barabási, A. L. Hierarchical organization in complex networks. Phys. Rev. E 67, 026112 (2003). [3] Dill, K. and Chan, H From Levinthal to pathways to funnels. Nature Struct. Biol. 4, 10-19 (1997)

  17. Highly Conserved Histidine Plays a Dual Catalytic Role in Protein Splicing: a pKa Shift Mechanism

    PubMed Central

    Du, Zhenming; Shemella, Philip T.; Liu, Yangzhong; McCallum, Scott A.; Pereira, Brian; Nayak, Saroj K.; Belfort, Georges; Belfort, Marlene; Wang, Chunyu

    2009-01-01

    Protein splicing is a precise auto-catalytic process in which an intein excises itself from a precursor with the concomitant ligation of the flanking sequences. Protein splicing occurs through acid-base catalysis in which the ionization states of active site residues are crucial to the reaction mechanism. In inteins, several conserved histidines have been shown to play important roles in protein splicing, including the most conserved “B-block” histidine. In this study, we have combined NMR pKa determination with quantum mechanics/molecular mechanics (QM/MM) modeling to study engineered inteins from Mycobacterium tuberculosis (Mtu) RecA intein. We demonstrate a dramatic pKa shift for the invariant B-block histidine, the most conserved residue among inteins. The B-block histidine has a pKa of 7.3 ± 0.6 in a precursor and a pKa of < 3.5 in a spliced intein. The pKa values and QM/MM data suggest that the B-block histidine has a dual role in the acid-base catalysis of protein splicing. This histidine likely acts as a general base to initiate splicing with an acyl shift and then as a general acid to cause the breakdown of the scissile bond. The proposed pKa shift mechanism accounts for the biochemical data supporting the essential role for the B-block histidine and for the absolute sequence conservation of this residue. PMID:19630416

  18. Halorhodopsin pumps Cl– and bacteriorhodopsin pumps protons by a common mechanism that uses conserved electrostatic interactions

    PubMed Central

    Gunner, M. R.

    2014-01-01

    Key mutations differentiate the functions of homologous proteins. One example compares the inward ion pump halorhodopsin (HR) and the outward proton pump bacteriorhodopsin (BR). Of the nine essential buried ionizable residues in BR, six are conserved in HR. However, HR changes three BR acids, D85 in a central cluster of ionizable residues, D96, nearer the intracellular, and E204, nearer the extracellular side of the membrane to the small, neutral amino acids T111, V122, and T230, respectively. In BR, acidic amino acids are stationary anions whose proton affinity is modulated by conformational changes, establishing a sequence of directed binding and release of protons. Multiconformation continuum electrostatics calculations of chloride affinity and residue protonation show that, in reaction intermediates where an acid is ionized in BR, a Cl– is bound to HR in a position near the deleted acid. In the HR ground state, Cl– binds tightly to the central cluster T111 site and weakly to the extracellular T230 site, recovering the charges on ionized BR-D85 and neutral E204 in BR. Imposing key conformational changes from the BR M intermediate into the HR structure results in the loss of Cl– from the central T111 site and the tight binding of Cl– to the extracellular T230 site, mirroring the changes that protonate BR-D85 and ionize E204 in BR. The use of a mobile chloride in place of D85 and E204 makes HR more susceptible to the environmental pH and salt concentrations than BR. These studies shed light on how ion transfer mechanisms are controlled through the interplay of protein and ion electrostatics. PMID:25362051

  19. Halorhodopsin pumps Cl- and bacteriorhodopsin pumps protons by a common mechanism that uses conserved electrostatic interactions.

    PubMed

    Song, Yifan; Gunner, M R

    2014-11-18

    Key mutations differentiate the functions of homologous proteins. One example compares the inward ion pump halorhodopsin (HR) and the outward proton pump bacteriorhodopsin (BR). Of the nine essential buried ionizable residues in BR, six are conserved in HR. However, HR changes three BR acids, D85 in a central cluster of ionizable residues, D96, nearer the intracellular, and E204, nearer the extracellular side of the membrane to the small, neutral amino acids T111, V122, and T230, respectively. In BR, acidic amino acids are stationary anions whose proton affinity is modulated by conformational changes, establishing a sequence of directed binding and release of protons. Multiconformation continuum electrostatics calculations of chloride affinity and residue protonation show that, in reaction intermediates where an acid is ionized in BR, a Cl(-) is bound to HR in a position near the deleted acid. In the HR ground state, Cl(-) binds tightly to the central cluster T111 site and weakly to the extracellular T230 site, recovering the charges on ionized BR-D85 and neutral E204 in BR. Imposing key conformational changes from the BR M intermediate into the HR structure results in the loss of Cl(-) from the central T111 site and the tight binding of Cl(-) to the extracellular T230 site, mirroring the changes that protonate BR-D85 and ionize E204 in BR. The use of a mobile chloride in place of D85 and E204 makes HR more susceptible to the environmental pH and salt concentrations than BR. These studies shed light on how ion transfer mechanisms are controlled through the interplay of protein and ion electrostatics. PMID:25362051

  20. Extracting Information from Folds in Rocks.

    ERIC Educational Resources Information Center

    Hudleston, Peter John

    1986-01-01

    Describes the three processes of folding in rocks: buckling, bending, and passive folding. Discusses how geometrical properties and strain distributions help to identify which processes produce natural folds, and also provides information about the mechanical properties of rocks, and the sense of shear in shear zones. (TW)

  1. Protein folding at atomic resolution: analysis of autonomously folding supersecondary structure motifs by nuclear magnetic resonance.

    PubMed

    Sborgi, Lorenzo; Verma, Abhinav; Sadqi, Mourad; de Alba, Eva; Muñoz, Victor

    2013-01-01

    The study of protein folding has been conventionally hampered by the assumption that all single-domain proteins fold by an all-or-none process (two-state folding) that makes it impossible to resolve folding mechanisms experimentally. Here we describe an experimental method for the thermodynamic analysis of protein folding at atomic resolution using nuclear magnetic resonance (NMR). The method is specifically developed for the study of small proteins that fold autonomously into basic supersecondary structure motifs, and that do so in the sub-millisecond timescale (folding archetypes). From the NMR experiments we obtain hundreds of atomic unfolding curves that are subsequently analyzed leading to the determination of the characteristic network of folding interactions. The application of this approach to a comprehensive catalog of elementary folding archetypes holds the promise of becoming the first experimental approach capable of unraveling the basic rules connecting protein structure and folding mechanism. PMID:22987355

  2. Understanding Conservation of Laws in Mechanics: Students' Conceptual Change in Learning about Collisions.

    ERIC Educational Resources Information Center

    Grimellini-Tomasini, N.; And Others

    1993-01-01

    Reviews research on student learning about collisions in physics instruction. Focus is placed on the main differences between the spontaneous perspective in describing/interpreting collisions and the disciplinary perspective based upon the energy and linear momentum conservation laws. (PR)

  3. SELECTING INDICATORS OF BIODIVERSITY FOR CONSERVATION PLANNING: IDENTIFYING THE MECHANISMS BEHIND INDICATOR GROUP PERFORMANCE

    EPA Science Inventory

    Most conservation planning is constrained by time and funding. In particular, the selection of areas to protect biodiversity must often be completed with limited data on species distributions. Consequently, different groups of species have been proposed as indicators or surroga...

  4. A Note on the Conservation of Mechanical Energy and the Galilean Principle of Relativity

    ERIC Educational Resources Information Center

    Santos, F. C.; Soares, V.; Tort, A. C.

    2010-01-01

    A reexamination of simple examples that we usually teach to our students in introductory courses is the starting point for a discussion about the principle of conservation of energy and Galilean invariance. (Contains 5 figures.)

  5. A repeated-measures analysis of the effects of soft tissues on wrist range of motion in the extant phylogenetic bracket of dinosaurs: Implications for the functional origins of an automatic wrist folding mechanism in Crocodilia.

    PubMed

    Hutson, Joel David; Hutson, Kelda Nadine

    2014-07-01

    A recent study hypothesized that avian-like wrist folding in quadrupedal dinosaurs could have aided their distinctive style of locomotion with semi-pronated and therefore medially facing palms. However, soft tissues that automatically guide avian wrist folding rarely fossilize, and automatic wrist folding of unknown function in extant crocodilians has not been used to test this hypothesis. Therefore, an investigation of the relative contributions of soft tissues to wrist range of motion (ROM) in the extant phylogenetic bracket of dinosaurs, and the quadrupedal function of crocodilian wrist folding, could inform these questions. Here, we repeatedly measured wrist ROM in degrees through fully fleshed, skinned, minus muscles/tendons, minus ligaments, and skeletonized stages in the American alligator Alligator mississippiensis and the ostrich Struthio camelus. The effects of dissection treatment and observer were statistically significant for alligator wrist folding and ostrich wrist flexion, but not ostrich wrist folding. Final skeletonized wrist folding ROM was higher than (ostrich) or equivalent to (alligator) initial fully fleshed ROM, while final ROM was lower than initial ROM for ostrich wrist flexion. These findings suggest that, unlike the hinge/ball and socket-type elbow and shoulder joints in these archosaurs, ROM within gliding/planar diarthrotic joints is more restricted to the extent of articular surfaces. The alligator data indicate that the crocodilian wrist mechanism functions to automatically lock their semi-pronated palms into a rigid column, which supports the hypothesis that this palmar orientation necessitated soft tissue stiffening mechanisms in certain dinosaurs, although ROM-restricted articulations argue against the presence of an extensive automatic mechanism. Anat Rec, 297:1228-1249, 2014. © 2014 Wiley Periodicals, Inc. PMID:24664936

  6. Thick-skinned tectonics and basement control on geometry, kinematics and mechanics of fold-and-thrust belts. Insights from some cenozoic belts worldwide

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Lacombe, Olivier; Bellahsen, Nicolas

    2015-04-01

    Fold-and-thrust belts (FTBs) form either in lower and upper plates at the expense of proximal parts of former passive margins during collision or within the upper plate of subduction orogens. In contrast, inner parts of mountain belts are likely made of stacked units from the distal passive margin domains that have undergone continental subduction and HP-LT metamorphism. There are increasing lines of evidence that the basement is involved in shortening in many FTBs worldwide, either pervasively (across the entire belt; tectonic inversion may even occur more forelandward than the mountain front) or mainly in their innermore domains where this basement is commonly exhumed. For thick-skinned FTBs that developed from former passive margins, the occurrence of weak mechanical layers within the proximal margin lithosphere (the middle and most of the lower crust are expectedly ductile) may explain that contractional deformation be distributed within most of the crust giving rise to basement-involved tectonic style. In contrast, because these weak crustal levels are usually lacking in distal parts of the margins as a result of thinning, these stronger lithospheric domains are more prone to localized deformation/subduction. Less understandable this way is the occurrence of thick-skinned wide domains within cold and strong interiors of upper plates of subduction zones, such as the Paleocene Laramide orogenic belt or the active Sierras Pampeanas belt. Structural, geophysical and thermochronological investigations within Cenozoic thick-skinned (or basement-involved thin-skinned) FTBs provide evidence for how the pre-orogenic and syn-orogenic deformation of the basement may control the geometry, kinematics and mechanics of FTBs. In this contribution, we examine some examples of FTBs where the basement is known to be involved in shortening and we review some aspects of the control exerted by the basement on the deformation. This control is demonstrated (1) at the scale of the

  7. In planta mutagenesis of Src homology 3 domain-like fold of NdhS, a ferredoxin-binding subunit of the chloroplast NADH dehydrogenase-like complex in Arabidopsis: a conserved Arg-193 plays a critical role in ferredoxin binding.

    PubMed

    Yamamoto, Hiroshi; Shikanai, Toshiharu

    2013-12-20

    Chloroplast NADH dehydrogenase-like (NDH) complex mediates cyclic electron transport around photosystem I and chlororespiration in angiosperms. The Src homology 3 domain (SH3)-like fold protein NdhS/CRR31 is an NDH subunit that is necessary for high affinity binding of ferredoxin, indicating that chloroplast NDH functions as a ferredoxin:plastoquinone oxidoreductase. However, the mechanism of the interaction between NdhS and ferredoxin is unclear. In this study, we analyzed their interaction in planta by using site-directed mutagenesis of NdhS. In general, binding of ferredoxin to its target proteins depends on electrostatic interaction. In silico analysis predicted the presence of a positively charged pocket in the SH3-like domain of NdhS, where nine charged residues are highly conserved among plants. Systematic alteration of these sites with neutral glutamine revealed that only arginine 193 was required for high NDH activity in vivo. Further replacement of arginine 193 with negatively charged aspartate or glutamate or hydrophobic alanine significantly decreased the efficiency of ferredoxin-dependent plastoquinone reduction by NDH in ruptured chloroplasts. Similar results were obtained in in vivo analyses of NDH activity and electron transport. From these results, we propose that the positive charge of arginine 193 in the SH3-like domain of NdhS is critical for electrostatic interaction with ferredoxin in vivo. PMID:24225949

  8. Hydroxynitrile Lyases with α/β-Hydrolase Fold: Two Enzymes with Almost Identical 3D Structures but Opposite Enantioselectivities and Different Reaction Mechanisms

    PubMed Central

    Andexer, Jennifer N; Staunig, Nicole; Eggert, Thorsten; Kratky, Christoph; Pohl, Martina; Gruber, Karl

    2012-01-01

    Hydroxynitrile lyases (HNLs) catalyze the cleavage of cyanohydrins to yield hydrocyanic acid (HCN) and the respective carbonyl compound and are key enzymes in the process of cyanogenesis in plants. In organic syntheses, HNLs are used as biocatalysts for the formation of enantiopure cyanohydrins. We determined the structure of the recently identified, R-selective HNL from Arabidopsis thaliana (AtHNL) at a crystallographic resolution of 2.5 Å. The structure exhibits an α/β-hydrolase fold, very similar to the homologous, but S-selective, HNL from Hevea brasiliensis (HbHNL). The similarities also extend to the active sites of these enzymes, with a Ser-His-Asp catalytic triad present in all three cases. In order to elucidate the mode of substrate binding and to understand the unexpected opposite enantioselectivity of AtHNL, complexes of the enzyme with both (R)- and (S)-mandelonitrile were modeled using molecular docking simulations. Compared to the complex of HbHNL with (S)-mandelonitrile, the calculations produced an approximate mirror image binding mode of the substrate with the phenyl rings located at very similar positions, but with the cyano groups pointing in opposite directions. A catalytic mechanism for AtHNL is proposed, in which His236 from the catalytic triad acts as a general base and the emerging negative charge on the cyano group is stabilized by main-chain amide groups and an α-helix dipole very similar to α/β-hydrolases. This mechanistic proposal is additionally supported by mutagenesis studies. PMID:22851196

  9. Hydroxynitrile lyases with α/β-hydrolase fold: two enzymes with almost identical 3D structures but opposite enantioselectivities and different reaction mechanisms.

    PubMed

    Andexer, Jennifer N; Staunig, Nicole; Eggert, Thorsten; Kratky, Christoph; Pohl, Martina; Gruber, Karl

    2012-09-01

    Hydroxynitrile lyases (HNLs) catalyze the cleavage of cyanohydrins to yield hydrocyanic acid (HCN) and the respective carbonyl compound and are key enzymes in the process of cyanogenesis in plants. In organic syntheses, HNLs are used as biocatalysts for the formation of enantiopure cyanohydrins. We determined the structure of the recently identified, R-selective HNL from Arabidopsis thaliana (AtHNL) at a crystallographic resolution of 2.5 Å. The structure exhibits an α/β-hydrolase fold, very similar to the homologous, but S-selective, HNL from Hevea brasiliensis (HbHNL). The similarities also extend to the active sites of these enzymes, with a Ser-His-Asp catalytic triad present in all three cases. In order to elucidate the mode of substrate binding and to understand the unexpected opposite enantioselectivity of AtHNL, complexes of the enzyme with both (R)- and (S)-mandelonitrile were modeled using molecular docking simulations. Compared to the complex of HbHNL with (S)-mandelonitrile, the calculations produced an approximate mirror image binding mode of the substrate with the phenyl rings located at very similar positions, but with the cyano groups pointing in opposite directions. A catalytic mechanism for AtHNL is proposed, in which His236 from the catalytic triad acts as a general base and the emerging negative charge on the cyano group is stabilized by main-chain amide groups and an α-helix dipole very similar to α/β-hydrolases. This mechanistic proposal is additionally supported by mutagenesis studies. PMID:22851196

  10. Fog spontaneously folds mosquito wings

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Dickerson, Andrew K.; Liu, Xing; Zhu, Ting; Hu, David L.

    2015-02-01

    The flexibility of insect wings confers aerodynamic benefits, but can also present a hazard if exposed to fog or dew. Fog can cause water to accumulate on wings, bending them into tight taco shapes and rendering them useless for flight. In this combined experimental and theoretical study, we use high-speed video to film the spontaneous folding of isolated mosquito wings due to the evaporation of a water drop. We predict shapes of the deformed wing using two-dimensional elastica theory, considering both surface tension and Laplace pressure. We also recommend fold-resistant geometries for the wings of flapping micro-aerial vehicles. Our work reveals the mechanism of insect wing folding and provides a framework for further study of capillarity-driven folding in both natural and biomimetic systems at small scales.

  11. Studying citizen science through adaptive management and learning feedbacks as mechanisms for improving conservation.

    PubMed

    Jordan, Rebecca; Gray, Steven; Sorensen, Amanda; Newman, Greg; Mellor, David; Newman, Greg; Hmelo-Silver, Cindy; LaDeau, Shannon; Biehler, Dawn; Crall, Alycia

    2016-06-01

    Citizen science has generated a growing interest among scientists and community groups, and citizen science programs have been created specifically for conservation. We examined collaborative science, a highly interactive form of citizen science, which we developed within a theoretically informed framework. In this essay, we focused on 2 aspects of our framework: social learning and adaptive management. Social learning, in contrast to individual-based learning, stresses collaborative and generative insight making and is well-suited for adaptive management. Adaptive-management integrates feedback loops that are informed by what is learned and is guided by iterative decision making. Participants engaged in citizen science are able to add to what they are learning through primary data collection, which can result in the real-time information that is often necessary for conservation. Our work is particularly timely because research publications consistently report a lack of established frameworks and evaluation plans to address the extent of conservation outcomes in citizen science. To illustrate how our framework supports conservation through citizen science, we examined how 2 programs enacted our collaborative science framework. Further, we inspected preliminary conservation outcomes of our case-study programs. These programs, despite their recent implementation, are demonstrating promise with regard to positive conservation outcomes. To date, they are independently earning funds to support research, earning buy-in from local partners to engage in experimentation, and, in the absence of leading scientists, are collecting data to test ideas. We argue that this success is due to citizen scientists being organized around local issues and engaging in iterative, collaborative, and adaptive learning. PMID:26585836

  12. Numerical investigation of deformation mechanics in fold-and-thrust belts: Influence of rheology of single and multiple décollements

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Ruh, Jonas B.; Kaus, Boris J. P.; Burg, Jean-Pierre

    2012-06-01

    Thin-skinned fold-and-thrust belts related to convergence tectonics develop by scraping off a rock sequence along a weaker basal décollement often formed by water-saturated shale layers or low-viscosity salt horizons. A two-dimensional finite element model with a viscoelastoplastic rheology is used to investigate the structural evolution of fold-and-thrust belts overlying different types of décollements. In addition, the influence of multiple weak layers in the stratigraphic column is studied. Model shale décollements are frictional, with lower friction angles as the cover sequence. Model salt layers behave linear viscous, due to a lower viscosity as the cover sequence, or with a power law rheology. Single viscous décollement simulations have been compared to an analytical solution concerning faulting versus folding. Results show that fold-and-thrust belts with a single frictional basal décollement generate thrust systems ramping from the décollement to the surface. Spacing between thrust ramps depends on the thickness of the cover sequence. The structural evolution of simulations with an additional low-frictional layer depends on the strength relationship between the basal and the intersequential décollement. Tectonic underplating and antiformal stacking occur if the within-sequence décollement is weaker. In the frontal part of models, deformation is restricted to the upper part and imbrication occurs with a wavelength depending on the depth of the intermediate weak layer. "Salt" décollement with a viscosity of 1018 Paṡs leads to isolated box folds (detachment folds). Multiple salt layers (1018 Paṡs) result in long-wavelength folding. Our results for both frictional and viscous décollements are in bulk agreement with the Mohr-Coulomb type, critical wedge theory.

  13. Let Them Fold

    ERIC Educational Resources Information Center

    Grant, Nicholas; Tobin, Alexander

    1972-01-01

    Directions are given for seven activities involving the folding of paper strips to illustrate geometric concepts. Properties of pentagons, triangles, hexagons, and Mobius bands resulting from the various foldings are discussed. (DT)

  14. Proteopedia: Rossmann Fold: A Beta-Alpha-Beta Fold at Dinucleotide Binding Sites

    ERIC Educational Resources Information Center

    Hanukoglu, Israel

    2015-01-01

    The Rossmann fold is one of the most common and widely distributed super-secondary structures. It is composed of a series of alternating beta strand (ß) and alpha helical (a) segments wherein the ß-strands are hydrogen bonded forming a ß-sheet. The initial beta-alpha-beta (ßaß) fold is the most conserved segment of Rossmann folds. As this segment…

  15. Structural and Mechanistic Analysis of a Novel Class of Shikimate Dehydrogenases: Evidence for a Conserved Catalytic Mechanism in the Shikimate Dehydrogenase Family

    SciTech Connect

    Peek, James; Lee, John; Hu, Shi; Senisterra, Guillermo; Christendat, Dinesh

    2011-10-27

    Shikimate dehydrogenase (SDH) catalyzes the reversible NADPH-dependent reduction of 3-dehydroshikimate to shikimate. This reaction represents the fourth step of the shikimate pathway, the essential route for the biosynthesis of the aromatic amino acids in plants, fungi, bacteria, and apicomplexan parasites. The absence of this pathway in animals makes it an attractive target for herbicides and antimicrobials. At least four functionally distinct enzyme classes, AroE, YdiB, SDH-like (SdhL), and AroE-like1 (Ael1), utilize shikimate as a substrate in vitro and form the SDH family. Crystal structures have been determined for AroE, YdiB, and SdhL. In this study, we have determined the first representative crystal structure of an Ael1 enzyme. We demonstrate that Ael1 shares a similar overall structure with the other members of the SDH family. This high level of structural conservation extends to the active sites of the enzymes. In particular, an ionizable active site lysine and aspartate are present in all SDH homologues. Two distinct biochemical roles have been reported for this Lys-Asp pair: as binding residues in YdiB and as a catalytic dyad in AroE and SdhL. Here, we establish that the residues function as a catalytic dyad in Ael1 and, interestingly, in at least one YdiB homologue. The conservation of three-dimensional fold, active site architecture, and catalytic mechanism among members of the SDH family will facilitate the design of drugs targeting the shikimate pathway.

  16. A Survey on Energy Conserving Mechanisms for the Internet of Things: Wireless Networking Aspects.

    PubMed

    Abbas, Zeeshan; Yoon, Wonyong

    2015-01-01

    The Internet of Things (IoT) is an emerging key technology for future industries and everyday lives of people, where a myriad of battery operated sensors, actuators, and smart objects are connected to the Internet to provide services such as mobile healthcare, intelligent transport system, environmental monitoring, etc. Since energy efficiency is of utmost importance to these battery constrained IoT devices, IoT-related standards and research works have focused on the device energy conserving issues. This paper presents a comprehensive survey on energy conserving issues and solutions in using diverse wireless radio access technologies for IoT connectivity, e.g., the 3rd Generation Partnership Project (3GPP) machine type communications, IEEE 802.11ah, Bluetooth Low Energy (BLE), and Z-Wave. We look into the literature in broad areas of standardization, academic research, and industry development, and structurally summarize the energy conserving solutions based on several technical criteria. We also propose future research directions regarding energy conserving issues in wireless networking-based IoT. PMID:26404275

  17. Winter Cereal Termination and Conservation Agriculture Cotton Yield Following Mechanical and Chemical Management Systems

    Technology Transfer Automated Retrieval System (TEKTRAN)

    An integral component of conservation-tillage systems in cotton is the use of a high-residue winter cover crop; however, managing such cover crops is a challenge. Black oat (Avena strigosa Schreb.), rye (Secale cereale L.), and wheat (Triticum aestivum L.) winter cover crops were established in ear...

  18. Mechanisms to conserve glucose in lactating women during a 42-h fast

    Technology Transfer Automated Retrieval System (TEKTRAN)

    Little is known about how lactating women accommodate for their increased glucose demands during fasting to avoid maternal hypoglycemia. The objective of this study was to determine whether lactating women conserve plasma glucose by reducing maternal glucose utilization by increasing utilization of ...

  19. Investigating the Conservation of Mechanical Energy Using Video Analysis: Four Cases

    ERIC Educational Resources Information Center

    Bryan, J. A.

    2010-01-01

    Inexpensive video analysis technology now enables students to make precise measurements of an object's position at incremental times during its motion. Such capability now allows users to "examine", rather than simply "assume", energy conservation in a variety of situations commonly discussed in introductory physics courses. This article describes…

  20. A Survey on Energy Conserving Mechanisms for the Internet of Things: Wireless Networking Aspects

    PubMed Central

    Abbas, Zeeshan; Yoon, Wonyong

    2015-01-01

    The Internet of Things (IoT) is an emerging key technology for future industries and everyday lives of people, where a myriad of battery operated sensors, actuators, and smart objects are connected to the Internet to provide services such as mobile healthcare, intelligent transport system, environmental monitoring, etc. Since energy efficiency is of utmost importance to these battery constrained IoT devices, IoT-related standards and research works have focused on the device energy conserving issues. This paper presents a comprehensive survey on energy conserving issues and solutions in using diverse wireless radio access technologies for IoT connectivity, e.g., the 3rd Generation Partnership Project (3GPP) machine type communications, IEEE 802.11ah, Bluetooth Low Energy (BLE), and Z-Wave. We look into the literature in broad areas of standardization, academic research, and industry development, and structurally summarize the energy conserving solutions based on several technical criteria. We also propose future research directions regarding energy conserving issues in wireless networking-based IoT. PMID:26404275

  1. Prolonged fasting identifies heat shock protein 10 as a Sirtuin 3 substrate: elucidating a new mechanism linking mitochondrial protein acetylation to fatty acid oxidation enzyme folding and function.

    PubMed

    Lu, Zhongping; Chen, Yong; Aponte, Angel M; Battaglia, Valentina; Gucek, Marjan; Sack, Michael N

    2015-01-23

    Although Sirtuin 3 (SIRT3), a mitochondrially enriched deacetylase and activator of fat oxidation, is down-regulated in response to high fat feeding, the rate of fatty acid oxidation and mitochondrial protein acetylation are invariably enhanced in this dietary milieu. These paradoxical data implicate that additional acetylation modification-dependent levels of regulation may be operational under nutrient excess conditions. Because the heat shock protein (Hsp) Hsp10-Hsp60 chaperone complex mediates folding of the fatty acid oxidation enzyme medium-chain acyl-CoA dehydrogenase, we tested whether acetylation-dependent mitochondrial protein folding contributes to this regulatory discrepancy. We demonstrate that Hsp10 is a functional SIRT3 substrate and that, in response to prolonged fasting, SIRT3 levels modulate mitochondrial protein folding. Acetyl mutagenesis of Hsp10 lysine 56 alters Hsp10-Hsp60 binding, conformation, and protein folding. Consistent with Hsp10-Hsp60 regulation of fatty acid oxidation enzyme integrity, medium-chain acyl-CoA dehydrogenase activity and fat oxidation are elevated by Hsp10 acetylation. These data identify acetyl modification of Hsp10 as a nutrient-sensing regulatory node controlling mitochondrial protein folding and metabolic function. PMID:25505263

  2. The threads that tie protein-folding diseases

    PubMed Central

    Brodsky, Jeffrey L.

    2014-01-01

    From unicellular organisms to humans, cells have evolved elegant systems to facilitate careful folding of proteins and the maintenance of protein homeostasis. Key modulators of protein homeostasis include a large, conserved family of proteins known as molecular chaperones, which augment the folding of nascent polypeptides and temper adverse consequences of cellular stress. However, errors in protein folding can still occur, resulting in the accumulation of misfolded proteins that strain cellular quality-control systems. In some cases, misfolded proteins can be targeted for degradation by the proteasome or via autophagy. Nevertheless, protein misfolding is a feature of many complex, genetically and clinically pleiotropic diseases, including neurodegenerative disorders and cancer. In recent years, substantial progress has been made in unraveling the complexity of protein folding using model systems, and we are now closer to being able to diagnose and treat the growing number of protein-folding diseases. To showcase some of these important recent advances, and also to inspire discussion on approaches to tackle unanswered questions, Disease Models & Mechanisms (DMM) presents a special collection of reviews from researchers at the cutting-edge of the field. PMID:24396147

  3. Teaching polymers to fold

    SciTech Connect

    Judson, R.S. )

    1992-12-10

    A new method is presented for predicting folding pathways of polymers. The folding pathway is described as a generic program or sequence of logical steps of such a form that a computer can carry them out to produce a folded structure. A genetic (GA) is used to learn specific sequences or folding pathways that carry a denatured conformation into a target final conformation. The method is demonstrated on a model 2-dimensional polymer for which the global energy minimum is known. The GA learns a program that will fold a denatured polymer into its global energy minimum conformation. 27 refs., 4 figs.

  4. Osmolyte solutions and protein folding

    PubMed Central

    Hu, Char Y; Roesgen, Joerg

    2009-01-01

    In this brief review we discuss the evolution of recent thought regarding the role and mechanism of osmolytes with respect to protein stability. Osmolytes are naturally occurring intracellular compounds that change the protein folding landscape. Contributions from experiments are considered in the context of current theory and simulation results. PMID:19960095

  5. Methylation of ribosomal RNA by NSUN5 is a conserved mechanism modulating organismal lifespan.

    PubMed

    Schosserer, Markus; Minois, Nadege; Angerer, Tina B; Amring, Manuela; Dellago, Hanna; Harreither, Eva; Calle-Perez, Alfonso; Pircher, Andreas; Gerstl, Matthias Peter; Pfeifenberger, Sigrid; Brandl, Clemens; Sonntagbauer, Markus; Kriegner, Albert; Linder, Angela; Weinhäusel, Andreas; Mohr, Thomas; Steiger, Matthias; Mattanovich, Diethard; Rinnerthaler, Mark; Karl, Thomas; Sharma, Sunny; Entian, Karl-Dieter; Kos, Martin; Breitenbach, Michael; Wilson, Iain B H; Polacek, Norbert; Grillari-Voglauer, Regina; Breitenbach-Koller, Lore; Grillari, Johannes

    2015-01-01

    Several pathways modulating longevity and stress resistance converge on translation by targeting ribosomal proteins or initiation factors, but whether this involves modifications of ribosomal RNA is unclear. Here, we show that reduced levels of the conserved RNA methyltransferase NSUN5 increase the lifespan and stress resistance in yeast, worms and flies. Rcm1, the yeast homologue of NSUN5, methylates C2278 within a conserved region of 25S rRNA. Loss of Rcm1 alters the structural conformation of the ribosome in close proximity to C2278, as well as translational fidelity, and favours recruitment of a distinct subset of oxidative stress-responsive mRNAs into polysomes. Thus, rather than merely being a static molecular machine executing translation, the ribosome exhibits functional diversity by modification of just a single rRNA nucleotide, resulting in an alteration of organismal physiological behaviour, and linking rRNA-mediated translational regulation to modulation of lifespan, and differential stress response. PMID:25635753

  6. Mechanism of formation of the C-terminal beta-hairpin of the B3 domain of the immunoglobulin-binding protein G from Streptococcus. IV. Implication for the mechanism of folding of the parent protein.

    PubMed

    Lewandowska, Agnieszka; Ołdziej, Stanislaw; Liwo, Adam; Scheraga, Harold A

    2010-05-01

    A 34-residue alpha/beta peptide [IG(28-61)], derived from the C-terminal part of the B3 domain of the immunoglobulin binding protein G from Streptoccocus, was studied using CD and NMR spectroscopy at various temperatures and by differential scanning calorimetry. It was found that the C-terminal part (a 16-residue-long fragment) of this peptide, which corresponds to the sequence of the beta-hairpin in the native structure, forms structure similar to the beta-hairpin only at T = 313 K, and the structure is stabilized by non-native long-range hydrophobic interactions (Val47-Val59). On the other hand, the N-terminal part of IG(28-61), which corresponds to the middle alpha-helix in the native structure, is unstructured at low temperature (283 K) and forms an alpha-helix-like structure at 305 K, and only one helical turn is observed at 313 K. At all temperatures at which NMR experiments were performed (283, 305, and 313 K), we do not observe any long-range connectivities which would have supported packing between the C-terminal (beta-hairpin) and the N-terminal (alpha-helix) parts of the sequence. Such interactions are absent, in contrast to the folding pathway of the B domain of protein G, proposed recently by Kmiecik and Kolinski (Biophys J 2008, 94, 726-736), based on Monte-Carlo dynamics studies. Alternative folding mechanisms are proposed and discussed. PMID:20049918

  7. Mechanism of formation of the C-terminal β-hairpin of the B3 domain of the immunoglobulin binding protein G from Streptococcus. Part IV. Implication for the mechanism of folding of the parent protein

    PubMed Central

    Lewandowska, Agnieszka; Ołdziej, Stanisław; Liwo, Adam; Scheraga, Harold A.

    2010-01-01

    A 34-residue α/β peptide, [IG(28-61)], derived from the C-terminal part of the B3 domain of the immunoglobulin binding protein G from Streptoccocus was studied using CD and NMR spectroscopy at various temperatures, and by differential scanning calorimetry. It was found that the C-terminal part (a 16-residue-long fragment) of this peptide, which corresponds to the sequence of the β-hairpin in the native structure, forms structure similar to the β-hairpin only at T = 313 K, and the structure is stabilized by non-native long-range hydrophobic interactions (Val47 – Val59). On the other hand, the N-terminal part of IG(28-61), which corresponds to the middle α-helix in the native structure, is unstructured at low temperature (283 K), and forms an α-helix-like structure at 305 K and only one helical turn is observed at 313 K. At all temperatures at which NMR experiments were performed (283, 305 and 313 K), we do not observe any long-range connectivities which would have supported packing between the C-terminal (β-hairpin) and the N-terminal (α-helix) parts of the sequence. Such interactions are absent, in contrast to the folding pathway of the B domain of protein G, proposed recently by Kmiecik and Koliński [Kmiecik, S.; Kolinski, A. Biophys J 2008, 94, 726-736], based on Monte Carlo dynamics studies. Alternative folding mechanisms are proposed and discussed. PMID:20049918

  8. The viral transactivator HBx protein exhibits a high potential for regulation via phosphorylation through an evolutionarily conserved mechanism

    PubMed Central

    2012-01-01

    Background Hepatitis B virus (HBV) encodes an oncogenic factor, HBx, which is a multifunctional protein that can induce dysfunctional regulation of signaling pathways, transcription, and cell cycle progression, among other processes, through interactions with target host factors. The subcellular localization of HBx is both cytoplasmic and nuclear. This dynamic distribution of HBx could be essential to the multiple roles of the protein at different stages during HBV infection. Transactivational functions of HBx may be exerted both in the nucleus, via interaction with host DNA-binding proteins, and in the cytoplasm, via signaling pathways. Although there have been many studies describing different pathways altered by HBx, and its innumerable binding partners, the molecular mechanism that regulates its different roles has been difficult to elucidate. Methods In the current study, we took a bioinformatics approach to investigate whether the viral protein HBx might be regulated via phosphorylation by an evolutionarily conserved mechanism. Results We found that the phylogenetically conserved residues Ser25 and Ser41 (both within the negative regulatory domain), and Thr81 (in the transactivation domain) are predicted to be phosphorylated. By molecular 3D modeling of HBx, we further show these residues are all predicted to be exposed on the surface of the protein, making them easily accesible to these types of modifications. Furthermore, we have also identified Yin Yang sites that might have the potential to be phosphorylated and O-β-GlcNAc interplay at the same residues. Conclusions Thus, we propose that the different roles of HBx displayed in different subcellular locations might be regulated by an evolutionarily conserved mechanism of posttranslational modification, via phosphorylation. PMID:23079056

  9. STIS MAMA Fold Distribution

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Wheeler, Thomas

    2013-10-01

    The performance of MAMA microchannel plates can be monitored using a MAMA fold distribution procedure. The fold distribution provides a measurement of the distribution of charge cloud sizes incident upon the anode giving some measure of change in the pulse-height distribution of the MCP and, therefore, MCP gain. This proposal executes the same steps as the STIS MAMA Fold Distribution, Proposal 13149, as Cycle 20.

  10. STIS MAMA Fold Distribution

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Wheeler, Thomas

    2012-10-01

    The performance of MAMA microchannel plates can be monitored using a MAMA fold distribution procedure. The fold distribution provides a measurement of the distribution of charge cloud sizes incident upon the anode giving some measure of change in the pulse-height distribution of the MCP and, therefore, MCP gain. This proposal executes the same steps as the STIS MAMA Fold Distribution, Proposal 12778, as Cycle 19.

  11. STIS MAMA Fold Distribution

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Wheeler, Thomas

    2010-09-01

    The performance of MAMA microchannel plates can be monitored using a MAMA fold analysis procedure. The fold analysis provides a measurement of the distribution of charge cloud sizes incident upon the anode giving some measure of changes in the pulse-height distribution of the MCP and, therefore, MCP gain. This proposal executes the same steps as the STIS MAMA Fold Analysis {11863} during Cycle 17.

  12. STIS MAMA Fold Distribution

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Wheeler, Thomas

    2011-10-01

    The performance of MAMA microchannel plates can be monitored using a MAMA fold analysis procedure. The fold analysis provides a measurement of the distribution of charge cloud sizes incident upon the anode giving some measure of changes in the pulse-height distribution of the MCP and, therefore, MCP gain. This proposal executes the same steps as the STIS MAMA Fold Analysis, Proposal 12416, as Cycle 18.

  13. Conserved molecular mechanisms underlying the effects of small molecule xenobiotic chemotherapeutics on cells

    PubMed Central

    SARIN, HEMANT

    2016-01-01

    For proper determination of the apoptotic potential of chemoxenobiotics in synergism, it is important to understand the modes, levels and character of interactions of chemoxenobiotics with cells in the context of predicted conserved biophysical properties. Chemoxenobiotic structures are studied with respect to atom distribution over molecular space, the predicted overall octanol-to-water partition coefficient (Log OWPC; unitless) and molecular size viz a viz van der Waals diameter (vdWD). The Log OWPC-to-vdWD (nm−1) parameter is determined, and where applicable, hydrophilic interacting moiety/core-to-vdWD (nm−1) and lipophilic incorporating hydrophobic moiety/core-to-vdWD (nm−1) parameters of their part-structures are determined. The cellular and sub-cellular level interactions of the spectrum of xenobiotic chemotherapies have been characterized, for which a classification system has been developed based on predicted conserved biophysical properties with respect to the mode of chemotherapeutic effect. The findings of this study are applicable towards improving the effectiveness of existing combination chemotherapy regimens and the predictive accuracy of personalized cancer treatment algorithms as well as towards the selection of appropriate novel xenobiotics with the potential to be potent chemotherapeutics for dendrimer nanoparticle-based effective transvascular delivery. PMID:26998284

  14. Phagocytosis by Thrombocytes is a Conserved Innate Immune Mechanism in Lower Vertebrates

    PubMed Central

    Nagasawa, Takahiro; Nakayasu, Chihaya; Rieger, Aja M.; Barreda, Daniel R.; Somamoto, Tomonori; Nakao, Miki

    2014-01-01

    Thrombocytes, nucleated hemostatic blood cells of non-mammalian vertebrates, are regarded as the functional equivalent of anucleated mammalian platelets. Additional immune functions, including phagocytosis, have also been suggested for thrombocytes, but no conclusive molecular or cellular experimental evidence for their potential ingestion and clearance of infiltrating microbes has been provided till date. In the present study, we demonstrate the active phagocytic ability of thrombocytes in lower vertebrates using teleost fishes and amphibian models. Ex vivo, common carp thrombocytes were able to ingest live bacteria as well as latex beads (0.5–3 μm in diameter) and kill the bacteria. In vivo, we found that thrombocytes represented nearly half of the phagocyte population in the common carp total peripheral blood leukocyte pool. Phagocytosis efficiency was further enhanced by serum opsonization. Particle internalization led to phagolysosome fusion and killing of internalized bacteria, pointing to a robust ability for microbe elimination. We find that this potent phagocytic activity is shared across teleost (Paralichthys olivaceus) and amphibian (Xenopus laevis) models examined, implying its conservation throughout the lower vertebrate lineage. Our results provide novel insights into the dual nature of thrombocytes in the immune and homeostatic response and further provide a deeper understanding of the potential immune function of mammalian platelets based on the conserved and vestigial functions. PMID:25278940

  15. Evolutionary conservation of vertebrate blood-brain barrier chemoprotective mechanisms in Drosophila

    PubMed Central

    Mayer, Fahima; Mayer, Nasima; Chinn, Leslie; Pinsonneault, Robert L.; Kroetz, Deanna; Bainton, Roland J.

    2011-01-01

    Pharmacologic remedy of many brain diseases is difficult because of the powerful drug exclusion properties of the blood-brain barrier (BBB). Chemical isolation of the vertebrate brain is achieved through the highly integrated, anatomically compact and functionally overlapping chemical isolation processes of the BBB. These include functions that need to be coordinated between tight diffusion junctions and unidirectionally-acting xenobiotic transporters. Understanding of many of these processes has been hampered, as they are not well mimicked by ex vivo models of the BBB and have been experimentally difficult and expensive to disentangle in intact rodent models. Here we show that the Drosophila melanogaster (Dm) humoral/CNS barrier conserves the xenobiotic exclusion properties found in the vertebrate vascular endothelium. We characterize a fly ABC transporter, Mdr65, that functions similar to mammalian xenobiotic BBB transporters and show that varying its levels solely in the Dm BBB changes the inherent sensitivity of the barrier to cytotoxic pharmaceuticals. Furthermore we demonstrate orthologous function between Mdr65 and vertebrate ABC transporters by rescuing chemical protection of the Dm brain with human MDR1/Pgp. These data indicate that the ancient origins of CNS chemoprotection extend to both conserved molecular means and functionally analogous anatomic spaces that together promote CNS selective drug partition. Thus, Dm presents an experimentally tractable system for analyzing physiological properties of the BBB in an intact organism. PMID:19295159

  16. A conservative approximation to compressible two-phase flow models in the stiff mechanical relaxation limit

    SciTech Connect

    Deledicque, Vincent; Papalexandris, Miltiadis V.

    2008-11-10

    In this article, we present and analyze a conservative approximation to reduced one-pressure one-velocity models for compressible two-phase flows that contain non-conservative products. This approximation is valid when certain material properties of the two phases are considerably different from each other. Although it cannot be applied to arbitrary mixtures, it is applicable to many heterogeneous mixtures of technological interest. Herein, we derive the Rankine-Hugoniot relations and Riemann invariants for the homogeneous part of the proposed model and develop an exact Riemann solver for it. Further, we investigate the structure of the steady two-phase detonation waves, with inert or reactive solid particles, admitted by the proposed model. Comparisons with the corresponding gaseous detonations are also made. Moreover, we derive a lower limit for the propagation speed of steady two-phase detonations in the case of reactive particles. At the limiting case of very dilute mixtures, this minimum speed tends to the Chapman-Jouguet velocity of gaseous detonations. Finally, we report on numerical simulations of the transmission of a purely gaseous detonation to heterogeneous mixtures containing inert or reactive solid particles. The effect of the solid particles on the structure of the resulting two-phase detonation is discussed in detail.

  17. A galaxy of folds.

    PubMed

    Alva, Vikram; Remmert, Michael; Biegert, Andreas; Lupas, Andrei N; Söding, Johannes

    2010-01-01

    Many protein classification systems capture homologous relationships by grouping domains into families and superfamilies on the basis of sequence similarity. Superfamilies with similar 3D structures are further grouped into folds. In the absence of discernable sequence similarity, these structural similarities were long thought to have originated independently, by convergent evolution. However, the growth of databases and advances in sequence comparison methods have led to the discovery of many distant evolutionary relationships that transcend the boundaries of superfamilies and folds. To investigate the contributions of convergent versus divergent evolution in the origin of protein folds, we clustered representative domains of known structure by their sequence similarity, treating them as point masses in a virtual 2D space which attract or repel each other depending on their pairwise sequence similarities. As expected, families in the same superfamily form tight clusters. But often, superfamilies of the same fold are linked with each other, suggesting that the entire fold evolved from an ancient prototype. Strikingly, some links connect superfamilies with different folds. They arise from modular peptide fragments of between 20 and 40 residues that co-occur in the connected folds in disparate structural contexts. These may be descendants of an ancestral pool of peptide modules that evolved as cofactors in the RNA world and from which the first folded proteins arose by amplification and recombination. Our galaxy of folds summarizes, in a single image, most known and many yet undescribed homologous relationships between protein superfamilies, providing new insights into the evolution of protein domains. PMID:19937658

  18. Microscopic interpretation of folding ϕ-values using the transition path ensemble.

    PubMed

    Best, Robert B; Hummer, Gerhard

    2016-03-22

    All-atom molecular dynamics simulations now allow us to create movies of proteins folding and unfolding. However, it is difficult to assess the accuracy of the folding mechanisms observed because experiments cannot yet directly resolve events occurring along the transition paths between unfolded and folded states. Protein folding ϕ-values provide residue-resolved information about folding mechanisms by comparing the effects of mutations on folding rates and stability, but determining ϕ-values by separately simulating mutant proteins would be computationally demanding and prone to large statistical errors. Here we use transition path theory to develop a method for computing ϕ-values directly from the transition path ensemble, without the need for additional simulations. This path-based approach uses the full transition path information available from equilibrium folding and unfolding trajectories, or from transition path sampling, and does not require identification of folding transition states. Applying our approach to a set of simulations of 10 small proteins by Shaw and coworkers [Lindorff-Larsen K, Piana S, Dror RO, Shaw DE (2011) Science 334(6055):517-520; Piana S, Lindorff-Larsen K, Shaw DE (2011) Biophys J100(9):L47-L49; and Piana S, Lindorff-Larsen K, Shaw DE (2013) Proc Natl Acad Sci USA 110(15):5915-5920], we find good agreement with experiments in most cases where data are available. We can further resolve the contributions to fractional ϕ-values coming from partial contact formation versus transition path heterogeneity. Although in some cases, there is substantial heterogeneity of folding mechanism, in others, such as Ubiquitin, the mechanism is strongly conserved. PMID:26957599

  19. Conglobation in the pill bug, Armadillidium vulgare, as a water conservation mechanism.

    PubMed

    Smigel, Jacob T; Gibbs, Allen G

    2008-01-01

    Water balance of the terrestrial isopod, Armadillidium vulgare, was investigated during conglobation (rolling-up behavior). Water loss and metabolic rates were measured at 18 +/- 1 degrees C in dry air using flow-through respirometry. Water-loss rates decreased 34.8% when specimens were in their conglobated form, while CO2 release decreased by 37.1%. Water loss was also measured gravimetrically at humidities ranging from 6 to 75 %RH. Conglobation was associated with a decrease in water-loss rates up to 53 %RH, but no significant differences were observed at higher humidities. Our findings suggest that conglobation behavior may help to conserve water, in addition to its demonstrated role in protection from predation. PMID:20233103

  20. Conglobation in the Pill Bug, Armadillidium vulgare, as a Water Conservation Mechanism

    PubMed Central

    Smigel, Jacob T.; Gibbs, Allen G.

    2008-01-01

    Water balance of the terrestrial isopod, Armadillidium vulgare, was investigated during conglobation (rolling-up behavior). Water loss and metabolic rates were measured at 18 ± 1°C in dry air using flow-through respirometry. Water-loss rates decreased 34.8% when specimens were in their conglobated form, while CO2 release decreased by 37.1%. Water loss was also measured gravimetrically at humidities ranging from 6 to 75 %RH. Conglobation was associated with a decrease in water-loss rates up to 53 %RH, but no significant differences were observed at higher humidities. Our findings suggest that conglobation behavior may help to conserve water, in addition to its demonstrated role in protection from predation. PMID:20233103

  1. Targeting of nucleotide-binding proteins by HAMLET--a conserved tumor cell death mechanism.

    PubMed

    Ho, J C S; Nadeem, A; Rydström, A; Puthia, M; Svanborg, C

    2016-02-18

    HAMLET (Human Alpha-lactalbumin Made LEthal to Tumor cells) kills tumor cells broadly suggesting that conserved survival pathways are perturbed. We now identify nucleotide-binding proteins as HAMLET binding partners, accounting for about 35% of all HAMLET targets in a protein microarray comprising 8000 human proteins. Target kinases were present in all branches of the Kinome tree, including 26 tyrosine kinases, 10 tyrosine kinase-like kinases, 13 homologs of yeast sterile kinases, 4 casein kinase 1 kinases, 15 containing PKA, PKG, PKC family kinases, 15 calcium/calmodulin-dependent protein kinase kinases and 13 kinases from CDK, MAPK, GSK3, CLK families. HAMLET acted as a broad kinase inhibitor in vitro, as defined in a screen of 347 wild-type, 93 mutant, 19 atypical and 17 lipid kinases. Inhibition of phosphorylation was also detected in extracts from HAMLET-treated lung carcinoma cells. In addition, HAMLET recognized 24 Ras family proteins and bound to Ras, RasL11B and Rap1B on the cytoplasmic face of the plasma membrane. Direct cellular interactions between HAMLET and activated Ras family members including Braf were confirmed by co-immunoprecipitation. As a consequence, oncogenic Ras and Braf activity was inhibited and HAMLET and Braf inhibitors synergistically increased tumor cell death in response to HAMLET. Unlike most small molecule kinase inhibitors, HAMLET showed selectivity for tumor cells in vitro and in vivo. The results identify nucleotide-binding proteins as HAMLET targets and suggest that dysregulation of the ATPase/kinase/GTPase machinery contributes to cell death, following the initial, selective recognition of HAMLET by tumor cells. The findings thus provide a molecular basis for the conserved tumoricidal effect of HAMLET, through dysregulation of kinases and oncogenic GTPases, to which tumor cells are addicted. PMID:26028028

  2. Reduced alphabet for protein folding prediction.

    PubMed

    Huang, Jitao T; Wang, Titi; Huang, Shanran R; Li, Xin

    2015-04-01

    What are the key building blocks that would have been needed to construct complex protein folds? This is an important issue for understanding protein folding mechanism and guiding de novo protein design. Twenty naturally occurring amino acids and eight secondary structures consist of a 28-letter alphabet to determine folding kinetics and mechanism. Here we predict folding kinetic rates of proteins from many reduced alphabets. We find that a reduced alphabet of 10 letters achieves good correlation with folding rates, close to the one achieved by full 28-letter alphabet. Many other reduced alphabets are not significantly correlated to folding rates. The finding suggests that not all amino acids and secondary structures are equally important for protein folding. The foldable sequence of a protein could be designed using at least 10 folding units, which can either promote or inhibit protein folding. Reducing alphabet cardinality without losing key folding kinetic information opens the door to potentially faster machine learning and data mining applications in protein structure prediction, sequence alignment and protein design. PMID:25641420

  3. Crystal structure of PXY-TDIF complex reveals a conserved recognition mechanism among CLE peptide-receptor pairs

    PubMed Central

    Zhang, Heqiao; Lin, Xiaoya; Han, Zhifu; Qu, Li-Jia; Chai, Jijie

    2016-01-01

    Plants can achieve amazing lifespans because of their continuous and repetitive formation of new organs by stem cells present within meristems. The balance between proliferation and differentiation of meristem cells is largely regulated by the CLAVATA3/ENDOSPERM SURROUNDING REGION (CLE) peptide hormones. One of the well-characterized CLE peptides, CLE41/TDIF (tracheary elements differentiation inhibitory factor), functions to suppress tracheary element differentiation and promote procambial cell proliferation, playing important roles in vascular development and wood formation. The recognition mechanisms of TDIF or other CLE peptides by their respective receptors, however, remain largely elusive. Here we report the crystal structure of TDIF in complex with its receptor PXY, a leucine-rich repeat receptor kinase (LRR-RK). Our structure reveals that TDIF mainly adopts an “Ω”-like conformation binding to the inner surface of the LRR domain of PXY. Interaction between TDIF and PXY is predominately mediated by the relatively conserved amino acids of TDIF. Structure-based sequence alignment showed that the TDIF-interacting motifs are also conserved among other known CLE receptors. Our data provide a structural template for understanding the recognition mechanism of CLE peptides by their receptors, offering an opportunity for the identification of receptors of other uncharacterized CLE peptides. PMID:27055373

  4. Conservative treatment preferences and the plausible mechanism of Neer's stage 1 of shoulder impingement in younger people.

    PubMed

    2015-05-01

    The interaction of various factors in the vicious cycle (VC) of subacromial impingement syndrome (SIS) is complex and there are conservative treatment preferences for speedy rehabilitation. The mechanism of SIS is not fully understood and the inappropriate treatment priorities cause delay in rehabilitation. SIS is related to the reduction in the subacromial space (SS). Posterior capsular tightness (PCT) and rotator cuff (RC) dysfunction are the two basic mechanisms in this regard. PCT may cause anterosuperior translation of humeral head (HH) and anterior acromion tipping through scapular dyskinesis, thereby reducing the subacromial space. Alteration in the force couple of muscle secondary to scapular dyskinesis eventually causes injury to subacromial structures. The rotator cuff is important in centring the humeral head in the glenoid cavity and superior translation of humeral head occurs if their function is compromised. Posterior capsular tightness may affect the function of rotator cuff action which leads to early fatigue, dysfunction of these muscles and eventually impingement. Adhesive changes take place in various structures around the shoulder secondary to impingement pain and relative immobility, which further aggravates the problem. To reverse the vicious cycle, conservative intervention should therefore be directed to loosen posterior capsular tightness, restore rotator cuff function through appropriate exercise in a pain-free range through appropriate exercise, mobilisation of adhesion through teraservers friction or pain-free mobilisation or grade I and grade II manipulation. Depending on the level of irritability, pain control intervention could be considered alongside. PMID:26028390

  5. Crystal structure of PXY-TDIF complex reveals a conserved recognition mechanism among CLE peptide-receptor pairs.

    PubMed

    Zhang, Heqiao; Lin, Xiaoya; Han, Zhifu; Qu, Li-Jia; Chai, Jijie

    2016-05-01

    Plants can achieve amazing lifespans because of their continuous and repetitive formation of new organs by stem cells present within meristems. The balance between proliferation and differentiation of meristem cells is largely regulated by the CLAVATA3/ENDOSPERM SURROUNDING REGION (CLE) peptide hormones. One of the well-characterized CLE peptides, CLE41/TDIF (tracheary elements differentiation inhibitory factor), functions to suppress tracheary element differentiation and promote procambial cell proliferation, playing important roles in vascular development and wood formation. The recognition mechanisms of TDIF or other CLE peptides by their respective receptors, however, remain largely elusive. Here we report the crystal structure of TDIF in complex with its receptor PXY, a leucine-rich repeat receptor kinase (LRR-RK). Our structure reveals that TDIF mainly adopts an "Ω"-like conformation binding to the inner surface of the LRR domain of PXY. Interaction between TDIF and PXY is predominately mediated by the relatively conserved amino acids of TDIF. Structure-based sequence alignment showed that the TDIF-interacting motifs are also conserved among other known CLE receptors. Our data provide a structural template for understanding the recognition mechanism of CLE peptides by their receptors, offering an opportunity for the identification of receptors of other uncharacterized CLE peptides. PMID:27055373

  6. Stress and strain evolution of folding rocks

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Llorens, Maria-Gema; Griera, Albert; Bons, Paul; Gomez-Rivas, Enrique; Weikusat, Ilka

    2015-04-01

    One of the main objectives of structural geology is to unravel rock deformation histories. Fold shapes can be used to estimate the orientation and amount of strain associated with folding. However, much more information on rheology and kinematics can potentially be extracted from fold geometries (Llorens et al., 2013a). We can study the development of folds, quantify the relationships between the different parameters that determine their geometries and estimate their mechanical evolution. This approach allows us to better understand and predict not only rock but also ice deformation. One of the main parameters in fold development is the viscosity contrast between the folding layer and the matrix in which it is embedded (m), since it determines the initial fold wavelength and the amplification rate of the developing folds. Moreover, non-linear viscous rheology influences fold geometry too (Llorens et al., 2013b). We present a series of 2-dimensional simulations of folding of viscous single layers in pure and simple shear. We vary different parameters in order to compare and determine their influence on the resulting fold patterns and the associated mechanical response of the material. To perform these simulations we use the software platform ELLE (www.elle.ws) with the non-linear viscous finite element code BASIL. The results show that layers thicken at the beginning of deformation in all simulations, and visible folds start earlier or later depending on the viscosity contrast. When folds start to nucleate the layer maximum shear strain decreases, moving away from the theoretical trend for homogeneous strain (no folding). This allows the accurate determination of the onset of folding. Maximum deviatoric stresses are higher in power-law than in linear-viscosity materials, and it is initially double in pure shear than in simple shear conditions. Therefore, folding a competent layer requires less work in simple than in pure shear. The maximum deviatoric stress

  7. The energy landscape for folding and function

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Onuchic, Jose

    2006-03-01

    Globally the energy landscape of a folding protein resembles a partially rough funnel. The local roughness of the funnel reflects transient trapping of the protein configurations in local free energy minima. The kinetics of folding is best considered as a progressive organization of an ensemble of partially folded structures through which the protein passes through on its way to the folded structure. The folding mechanisms for several fast-folding proteins can be described using an energy landscape theory to set up the correspondence with simulations of protein minimalist models. Using these simulations together with analytical theory, we can learn about good (minimally frustrated) folding sequences and non-folding (frustrated) sequences. An important idea that emerges from this theory is that subtle features of the protein landscape can profoundly affect the apparent mechanism of folding. Experiments on the dependence of the folding/unfolding times, and the stability of these proteins to denaturant concentration and site-directed mutagenesis, and on the early events of folding allow to infer the global characteristics of the landscape. In addition to need to minimize energetic frustration, the topology of the native fold also plays a major role in the folding mechanism. Some folding motifs are easier to design than others suggesting the possibility that evolution not only selected sequences with sufficiently small energetic frustration but also selected more easily designable native structures. Several proteins (such as CI2 and SH3) have sufficiently reduced energetic frustration) that much of the heterogeneity observed in their transition state ensemble (TSE) is determined by topology. Topological effects go beyond the structure of the TSE. The overall structure of the on-route and off-route (traps) intermediates for the folding of more complex proteins is also influenced by topology. Utilizing this theoretical framework, simulations of minimalist models and

  8. Nomenclature proposal to describe vocal fold motion impairment.

    PubMed

    Rosen, Clark A; Mau, Ted; Remacle, Marc; Hess, Markus; Eckel, Hans E; Young, VyVy N; Hantzakos, Anastasios; Yung, Katherine C; Dikkers, Frederik G

    2016-08-01

    The terms used to describe vocal fold motion impairment are confusing and not standardized. This results in a failure to communicate accurately and to major limitations of interpreting research studies involving vocal fold impairment. We propose standard nomenclature for reporting vocal fold impairment. Overarching terms of vocal fold immobility and hypomobility are rigorously defined. This includes assessment techniques and inclusion and exclusion criteria for determining vocal fold immobility and hypomobility. In addition, criteria for use of the following terms have been outlined in detail: vocal fold paralysis, vocal fold paresis, vocal fold immobility/hypomobility associated with mechanical impairment of the crico-arytenoid joint and vocal fold immobility/hypomobility related to laryngeal malignant disease. This represents the first rigorously defined vocal fold motion impairment nomenclature system. This provides detailed definitions to the terms vocal fold paralysis and vocal fold paresis. PMID:26036851

  9. Energy conservation in ad hoc multimedia networks using traffic-shaping mechanisms

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Chandra, Surendar

    2003-12-01

    In this work, we explore network traffic shaping mechanisms that deliver packets at pre-determined intervals; allowing the network interface to transition to a lower power consuming sleep state. We focus our efforts on commodity devices, IEEE 802.11b ad hoc mode and popular streaming formats. We argue that factors such as the lack of scheduling clock phase synchronization among the participants and scheduling delays introduced by back ground tasks affect the potential energy savings. Increasing the periodic transmission delays to transmit data infrequently can offset some of these effects at the expense of flooding the wireless channel for longer periods of time; potentially increasing the time to acquire the channel for non-multimedia traffic. Buffering mechanisms built into media browsers can mitigate the effects of these added delays from being mis-interpreted as network congestion. We show that practical implementations of such traffic shaping mechanisms can offer significant energy savings.

  10. The presence of disulfide bonds reveals an evolutionarily conserved mechanism involved in mitochondrial protein translocase assembly

    PubMed Central

    Wrobel, Lidia; Sokol, Anna M.; Chojnacka, Magdalena; Chacinska, Agnieszka

    2016-01-01

    Disulfide bond formation is crucial for the biogenesis and structure of many proteins that are localized in the intermembrane space of mitochondria. The importance of disulfide bond formation within mitochondrial proteins was extended beyond soluble intermembrane space proteins. Tim22, a membrane protein and core component of the mitochondrial translocase TIM22, forms an intramolecular disulfide bond in yeast. Tim22 belongs to the Tim17/Tim22/Tim23 family of protein translocases. Here, we present evidence of the high evolutionary conservation of disulfide bond formation in Tim17 and Tim22 among fungi and metazoa. Topological models are proposed that include the location of disulfide bonds relative to the predicted transmembrane regions. Yeast and human Tim22 variants that are not oxidized do not properly integrate into the membrane complex. Moreover, the lack of Tim17 oxidation disrupts the TIM23 translocase complex. This underlines the importance of disulfide bond formation for mature translocase assembly through membrane stabilization of weak transmembrane domains. PMID:27265872

  11. Folding of a miniprotein with mixed fold.

    PubMed

    Mohanty, Sandipan; Hansmann, U H E

    2007-07-21

    Using the 28 residue betabetaalpha protein FSD-EY as a target system, we examine correction terms for the ECEPP/3 force field. We find an increased probability of formation of the native state at low temperatures resulting from a reduced propensity to form alpha helices and increased formation of beta sheets. Our analysis of the observed folding events suggests that the C-terminal helix of FSD-EY is much more stable than the N-terminal beta hairpin and forms first. The hydrophobic groups of the helix provide a template which promotes the formation of the beta hairpin that is never observed to form without the helix. PMID:17655464

  12. Protein Folding and Self-Organized Criticality

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Bajracharya, Arun; Murray, Joelle

    Proteins are known to fold into tertiary structures that determine their functionality in living organisms. However, the complex dynamics of protein folding and the way they consistently fold into the same structures is not fully understood. Self-organized criticality (SOC) has provided a framework for understanding complex systems in various systems (earthquakes, forest fires, financial markets, and epidemics) through scale invariance and the associated power law behavior. In this research, we use a simple hydrophobic-polar lattice-bound computational model to investigate self-organized criticality as a possible mechanism for generating complexity in protein folding.

  13. The M1 family of vertebrate aminopeptidases: role of evolutionarily conserved tyrosines in the enzymatic mechanism of aminopeptidase B.

    PubMed

    Cadel, Sandrine; Darmon, Cécile; Pernier, Julien; Hervé, Guy; Foulon, Thierry

    2015-02-01

    Aminopeptidase B (Ap-B), a member of the M1 family of Zn(2+)-aminopeptidases, removes basic residues at the NH2-terminus of peptides and is involved in the in vivo proteolytic processing of miniglucagon and cholecystokinin-8. M1 enzymes hydrolyze numerous different peptides and are implicated in many physiological functions. As these enzymes have similar catalytic mechanisms, their respective substrate specificity and/or catalytic efficiency must be based on subtle structural differences at or near the catalytic site. This leads to the hypothesis that each primary structure contains a consensus structural template, strictly necessary for aminopeptidase activity, and a specific amino acid environment localized in or outside the catalytic pocket that finely tunes the substrate specificity and catalytic efficiency of each enzyme. A multiple sequence alignment of M1 peptidases from vertebrates allowed to identify conserved tyrosine amino acids, which are members of this catalytic backbone. In the present work, site-directed mutagenesis and 3D molecular modeling of Ap-B were used to specify the role of four fully (Y281, Y229, Y414, and Y441) and one partially (Y409) conserved residues. Tyrosine to phenylalanine mutations allowed confirming the influence of the hydroxyl groups on the enzyme activity. These groups are implicated in the reaction mechanism (Y414), in substrate specificity and/or catalytic efficiency (Y409), in stabilization of essential amino acids of the active site (Y229, Y409) and potentially in the maintenance of its structural integrity (Y281, Y441). The importance of hydrogen bonds is verified by the Y229H substitution, which preserves the enzyme activity. These data provide new insights into the catalytic mechanism of Ap-B in the M1 family of aminopeptidases. PMID:25530263

  14. Conservation of a Packaging Signal and the Viral Genome RNA Packaging Mechanism in Alphavirus Evolution ▿

    PubMed Central

    Kim, Dal Young; Firth, Andrew E.; Atasheva, Svetlana; Frolova, Elena I.; Frolov, Ilya

    2011-01-01

    Alphaviruses are a group of small, enveloped viruses which are widely distributed on all continents. In infected cells, alphaviruses display remarkable specificity in RNA packaging by encapsidating only their genomic RNA while avoiding packaging of the more abundant viral subgenomic (SG), cellular messenger and transfer RNAs into released virions. In this work, we demonstrate that in spite of evolution in geographically isolated areas and accumulation of considerable diversity in the nonstructural and structural genes, many alphaviruses belonging to different serocomplexes harbor RNA packaging signals (PSs) which contain the same structural and functional elements. Their characteristic features are as follows. (i) Sindbis, eastern, western, and Venezuelan equine encephalitis and most likely many other alphaviruses, except those belonging to the Semliki Forest virus (SFV) clade, have PSs which can be recognized by the capsid proteins of heterologous alphaviruses. (ii) The PS consists of 4 to 6 stem-loop RNA structures bearing conserved GGG sequences located at the base of the loop. These short motifs are integral elements of the PS and can function even in the artificially designed PS. (iii) Mutagenesis of the entire PS or simply the GGG sequences has strong negative effects on viral genome packaging and leads to release of viral particles containing mostly SG RNAs. (iv) Packaging of RNA appears to be determined to some extent by the number of GGG-containing stem-loops, and more than one stem-loop is required for efficient RNA encapsidation. (v) Viruses of the SFV clade are the exception to the general rule. They contain PSs in the nsP2 gene, but their capsid protein retains the ability to use the nsP1-specific PS of other alphaviruses. These new discoveries regarding alphavirus PS structure and function provide an opportunity for the development of virus variants, which are irreversibly attenuated in terms of production of infectious virus but release high levels

  15. Fermilab Central Computing Facility: Energy conservation report and mechanical systems design optimization and cost analysis study

    SciTech Connect

    Krstulovich, S.F.

    1986-11-12

    This report is developed as part of the Fermilab Central Computing Facility Project Title II Design Documentation Update under the provisions of DOE Document 6430.1, Chapter XIII-21, Section 14, paragraph a. As such, it concentrates primarily on HVAC mechanical systems design optimization and cost analysis and should be considered as a supplement to the Title I Design Report date March 1986 wherein energy related issues are discussed pertaining to building envelope and orientation as well as electrical systems design.

  16. Drosophila Ncd reveals an evolutionarily conserved powerstroke mechanism for homodimeric and heterodimeric kinesin-14s.

    PubMed

    Zhang, Pengwei; Dai, Wei; Hahn, Juergen; Gilbert, Susan P

    2015-05-19

    Drosophila melanogaster kinesin-14 Ncd cross-links parallel microtubules at the spindle poles and antiparallel microtubules within the spindle midzone to play roles in bipolar spindle assembly and proper chromosome distribution. As observed for Saccharomyces cerevisiae kinesin-14 Kar3Vik1 and Kar3Cik1, Ncd binds adjacent microtubule protofilaments in a novel microtubule binding configuration and uses an ATP-promoted powerstroke mechanism. The hypothesis tested here is that Kar3Vik1 and Kar3Cik1, as well as Ncd, use a common ATPase mechanism for force generation even though the microtubule interactions for both Ncd heads are modulated by nucleotide state. The presteady-state kinetics and computational modeling establish an ATPase mechanism for a powerstroke model of Ncd that is very similar to those determined for Kar3Vik1 and Kar3Cik1, although these heterodimers have one Kar3 catalytic motor domain and a Vik1/Cik1 partner motor homology domain whose interactions with microtubules are not modulated by nucleotide state but by strain. The results indicate that both Ncd motor heads bind the microtubule lattice; two ATP binding and hydrolysis events are required for each powerstroke; and a slow step occurs after microtubule collision and before the ATP-promoted powerstroke. Note that unlike conventional myosin-II or other processive molecular motors, Ncd requires two ATP turnovers rather than one for a single powerstroke-driven displacement or step. These results are significant because all metazoan kinesin-14s are homodimers, and the results presented show that despite their structural and functional differences, the heterodimeric and homodimeric kinesin-14s share a common evolutionary structural and mechanochemical mechanism for force generation. PMID:25941402

  17. Systemic Acquired Resistance in Moss: Further Evidence for Conserved Defense Mechanisms in Plants

    PubMed Central

    Winter, Peter S.; Bowman, Collin E.; Villani, Philip J.; Dolan, Thomas E.; Hauck, Nathanael R.

    2014-01-01

    Vascular plants possess multiple mechanisms for defending themselves against pathogens. One well-characterized defense mechanism is systemic acquired resistance (SAR). In SAR, a plant detects the presence of a pathogen and transmits a signal throughout the plant, inducing changes in the expression of various pathogenesis-related (PR) genes. Once SAR is established, the plant is capable of mounting rapid responses to subsequent pathogen attacks. SAR has been characterized in numerous angiosperm and gymnosperm species; however, despite several pieces of evidence suggesting SAR may also exist in non-vascular plants6–8, its presence in non-vascular plants has not been conclusively demonstrated, in part due to the lack of an appropriate culture system. Here, we describe and use a novel culture system to demonstrate that the moss species Amblystegium serpens does initiate a SAR-like reaction upon inoculation with Pythium irregulare, a common soil-borne oomycete. Infection of A. serpens gametophores by P. irregulare is characterized by localized cytoplasmic shrinkage within 34 h and chlorosis and necrosis within 7 d of inoculation. Within 24 h of a primary inoculation (induction), moss gametophores grown in culture became highly resistant to infection following subsequent inoculation (challenge) by the same pathogen. This increased resistance was a response to the pathogen itself and not to physical wounding. Treatment with β-1,3 glucan, a structural component of oomycete cell walls, was equally effective at triggering SAR. Our results demonstrate, for the first time, that this important defense mechanism exists in a non-vascular plant, and, together with previous studies, suggest that SAR arose prior to the divergence of vascular and non-vascular plants. In addition, this novel moss – pathogen culture system will be valuable for future characterization of the mechanism of SAR in moss, which is necessary for a better understanding of the evolutionary history of SAR

  18. Asymmetric hindwing foldings in rove beetles

    PubMed Central

    Saito, Kazuya; Yamamoto, Shuhei; Maruyama, Munetoshi; Okabe, Yoji

    2014-01-01

    Foldable wings of insects are the ultimate deployable structures and have attracted the interest of aerospace engineering scientists as well as entomologists. Rove beetles are known to fold their wings in the most sophisticated ways that have right–left asymmetric patterns. However, the specific folding process and the reason for this asymmetry remain unclear. This study reveals how these asymmetric patterns emerge as a result of the folding process of rove beetles. A high-speed camera was used to reveal the details of the wing-folding movement. The results show that these characteristic asymmetrical patterns emerge as a result of simultaneous folding of overlapped wings. The revealed folding mechanisms can achieve not only highly compact wing storage but also immediate deployment. In addition, the right and left crease patterns are interchangeable, and thus each wing internalizes two crease patterns and can be folded in two different ways. This two-way folding gives freedom of choice for the folding direction to a rove beetle. The use of asymmetric patterns and the capability of two-way folding are unique features not found in artificial structures. These features have great potential to extend the design possibilities for all deployable structures, from space structures to articles of daily use. PMID:25368178

  19. Some aspects of vocal fold bowing.

    PubMed

    Tanaka, S; Hirano, M; Chijiwa, K

    1994-05-01

    Bowing of the vocal fold frequently occurs in patients with vocal fold paralysis (VFP), those with sulcus vocalis, and those who have had laser surgery. Additionally, there are vocal folds that present bowing with no noticeable organic lesion. For the purpose of investigating the causes and mechanisms of vocal fold bowing, consecutive fiberscopic videorecordings of 127 patients with VFP, 33 with sulcus vocalis, 33 with laser surgery, and 33 with dysphonia having no clinically noticeable organic lesion were reviewed. Sixty-nine percent of the paralyzed vocal folds had bowing, and the occurrence of bowing was significantly related to the activity of the thyroarytenoid muscle as measured by electromyography. The cricothyroid activity had no significant relationship to vocal fold bowing. All vocal folds with sulcus presented with bowing. Thirty-five percent of the vocal folds that had had laser surgery had bowing. The extent of tissue removal was closely related to the occurrence of bowing. Twelve cases with no organic lesion had vocal fold bowing. Of these 12 patients, 8 were male and 9 were older than 60 years. Some aging process in the mucosa was presumed to be the cause of the bowing in this age group of patients without clinically noticeable organic lesions. Causes of vocal fold bowing in the younger group of patients without organic lesions were not determined in this study. PMID:8179251

  20. Asymmetric hindwing foldings in rove beetles.

    PubMed

    Saito, Kazuya; Yamamoto, Shuhei; Maruyama, Munetoshi; Okabe, Yoji

    2014-11-18

    Foldable wings of insects are the ultimate deployable structures and have attracted the interest of aerospace engineering scientists as well as entomologists. Rove beetles are known to fold their wings in the most sophisticated ways that have right-left asymmetric patterns. However, the specific folding process and the reason for this asymmetry remain unclear. This study reveals how these asymmetric patterns emerge as a result of the folding process of rove beetles. A high-speed camera was used to reveal the details of the wing-folding movement. The results show that these characteristic asymmetrical patterns emerge as a result of simultaneous folding of overlapped wings. The revealed folding mechanisms can achieve not only highly compact wing storage but also immediate deployment. In addition, the right and left crease patterns are interchangeable, and thus each wing internalizes two crease patterns and can be folded in two different ways. This two-way folding gives freedom of choice for the folding direction to a rove beetle. The use of asymmetric patterns and the capability of two-way folding are unique features not found in artificial structures. These features have great potential to extend the design possibilities for all deployable structures, from space structures to articles of daily use. PMID:25368178

  1. Multiple folding pathways of proteins with shallow knots and co-translational folding

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Chwastyk, Mateusz; Cieplak, Marek

    2015-07-01

    We study the folding process in the shallowly knotted protein MJ0366 within two variants of a structure-based model. We observe that the resulting topological pathways are much richer than identified in previous studies. In addition to the single knot-loop events, we find novel, and dominant, two-loop mechanisms. We demonstrate that folding takes place in a range of temperatures and the conditions of most successful folding are at temperatures which are higher than those required for the fastest folding. We also demonstrate that nascent conditions are more favorable to knotting than off-ribosome folding.

  2. Multiple folding pathways of proteins with shallow knots and co-translational folding.

    PubMed

    Chwastyk, Mateusz; Cieplak, Marek

    2015-07-28

    We study the folding process in the shallowly knotted protein MJ0366 within two variants of a structure-based model. We observe that the resulting topological pathways are much richer than identified in previous studies. In addition to the single knot-loop events, we find novel, and dominant, two-loop mechanisms. We demonstrate that folding takes place in a range of temperatures and the conditions of most successful folding are at temperatures which are higher than those required for the fastest folding. We also demonstrate that nascent conditions are more favorable to knotting than off-ribosome folding. PMID:26233164

  3. Polymer principles and protein folding.

    PubMed Central

    Dill, K. A.

    1999-01-01

    This paper surveys the emerging role of statistical mechanics and polymer theory in protein folding. In the polymer perspective, the folding code is more a solvation code than a code of local phipsi propensities. The polymer perspective resolves two classic puzzles: (1) the Blind Watchmaker's Paradox that biological proteins could not have originated from random sequences, and (2) Levinthal's Paradox that the folded state of a protein cannot be found by random search. Both paradoxes are traditionally framed in terms of random unguided searches through vast spaces, and vastness is equated with impossibility. But both processes are partly guided. The searches are more akin to balls rolling down funnels than balls rolling aimlessly on flat surfaces. In both cases, the vastness of the search is largely irrelevant to the search time and success. These ideas are captured by energy and fitness landscapes. Energy landscapes give a language for bridging between microscopics and macroscopics, for relating folding kinetics to equilibrium fluctuations, and for developing new and faster computational search strategies. PMID:10386867

  4. EARLY BUD-BREAK1 (EBB1) defines a conserved mechanism for control of bud-break in woody perennials

    PubMed Central

    Busov, Victor; Carneros, Elena; Yakovlev, Igor

    2016-01-01

    Bud-break is an environmentally and economically important trait in trees, shrubs and vines from temperate latitudes. Poor synchronization of bud-break timing with local climates can lead to frost injuries, susceptibility to pests and pathogens and poor crop yields in fruit trees and vines. The rapid climate changes outpace the adaptive capacities of plants to respond through natural selection. This is particularly true for trees which have long generation cycle and thus the adaptive changes are significantly delayed. Therefore, to devise appropriate breeding and conservation strategies, it is imperative to understand the molecular underpinnings that govern dormancy mechanisms. We have recently identified and characterized the poplar EARLY BUD-BREAK 1 (EBB1) gene. EBB1 is a positive regulator of bud-break and encodes a transcription factor from the AP2/ERF family. Here, using comparative and functional genomics approaches we show that EBB1 function in regulation of bud-break is likely conserved across wide range of woody perennial species with importance to forestry and agriculture. PMID:26317150

  5. Energy Landscapes and Solved Protein Folding Problems

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Wolynes, Peter

    2004-03-01

    Peter G. Wolynes Center for Theoretical Biological Physics Department of Chemistry and Biochemistry and Physics University of California, San Diego La Jolla, CA 92093-0371 Fifteen years ago, how proteins folded into organized structures on the basis of their sequence was a great mystery. By characterizing the energy landscapes of proteins with tools from the statistical mechanics of disordered systems like spin glasses, a "new view' of the folding process became possible. Energy landscape theory provided an incentive to pursue heroic new experiments and to carry out difficult computer simulations addressing protein folding mechanisms. Many aspects of folding kinetics revealed by these studies can be quantitatively understood using the simple idea that the topography of the energy landscape is that of a "rugged funnel". Energy landscape theory provided a quantitative means of characterizing which amino acid sequences can rapidly fold. Algorithms based on energy landscape theory have been used to successfully design novel sequences that fold to a given structure in the laboratory. Energy landscape ideas have begun to transform the prediction of protein structure from sequence data from being an art to being a science. The success of energy landscape- based algorithms in predicting protein structure from sequence will be highlighted. While there is still much to learn about folding mechanisms and much work to do achieving universally reliable structure prediction, many parts of what used to be called "the protein folding problem" can now be considered solved.

  6. Empathy as a driver of prosocial behaviour: highly conserved neurobehavioural mechanisms across species.

    PubMed

    Decety, Jean; Bartal, Inbal Ben-Ami; Uzefovsky, Florina; Knafo-Noam, Ariel

    2016-01-19

    Empathy reflects the natural ability to perceive and be sensitive to the emotional states of others, coupled with a motivation to care for their well-being. It has evolved in the context of parental care for offspring, as well as within kinship bonds, to help facilitate group living. In this paper, we integrate the perspectives of evolution, animal behaviour, developmental psychology, and social and clinical neuroscience to elucidate our understanding of the proximate mechanisms underlying empathy. We focus, in particular, on processing of signals of distress and need, and their relation to prosocial behaviour. The ability to empathize, both in animals and humans, mediates prosocial behaviour when sensitivity to others' distress is paired with a drive towards their welfare. Disruption or atypical development of the neural circuits that process distress cues and integrate them with decision value leads to callous disregard for others, as is the case in psychopathy. The realization that basic forms of empathy exist in non-human animals is crucial for gaining new insights into the underlying neurobiological and genetic mechanisms of empathy, enabling translation towards therapeutic and pharmacological interventions. PMID:26644596

  7. Conservative Mechanisms of Extracellular Trap Formation by Annelida Eisenia andrei: Serine Protease Activity Requirement.

    PubMed

    Homa, Joanna; Ortmann, Weronika; Kolaczkowska, Elzbieta

    2016-01-01

    Formation of extracellular traps (ETs) capturing and immobilizing pathogens is now a well-established defense mechanism added to the repertoire of vertebrate phagocytes. These ETs are composed of extracellular DNA (extDNA), histones and antimicrobial proteins. Formation of mouse and human ETs depends on enzymes (i) facilitating decondensation of chromatin by citrullination of histones, and (ii) serine proteases degrading histones. In invertebrates, initial reports revealed existence of ETs composed of extDNA and histones, and here we document for the first time that also coelomocytes, immunocompetent cells of an earthworm Eisenia andrei, cast ETs which successfully trap bacteria in a reactive oxygen species (ROS)-dependent and -independent manner. Importantly, the formation of ETs was observed not only when coelomocytes were studied ex vivo, but also in vivo, directly in the earthworm coelom. These ETs were composed of extDNA, heat shock proteins (HSP27) and H3 histones. Furthermore, the formation of E. andrei ETs depended on activity of serine proteases, including elastase-like activity. Moreover, ETs interconnected and hold together aggregating coelomocytes, a processes proceeding encapsulation. In conclusion, the study confirms ET formation by earthworms, and unravels mechanisms leading to ET formation and encapsulation in invertebrates. PMID:27416067

  8. Conservative Mechanisms of Extracellular Trap Formation by Annelida Eisenia andrei: Serine Protease Activity Requirement

    PubMed Central

    Ortmann, Weronika; Kolaczkowska, Elzbieta

    2016-01-01

    Formation of extracellular traps (ETs) capturing and immobilizing pathogens is now a well-established defense mechanism added to the repertoire of vertebrate phagocytes. These ETs are composed of extracellular DNA (extDNA), histones and antimicrobial proteins. Formation of mouse and human ETs depends on enzymes (i) facilitating decondensation of chromatin by citrullination of histones, and (ii) serine proteases degrading histones. In invertebrates, initial reports revealed existence of ETs composed of extDNA and histones, and here we document for the first time that also coelomocytes, immunocompetent cells of an earthworm Eisenia andrei, cast ETs which successfully trap bacteria in a reactive oxygen species (ROS)-dependent and -independent manner. Importantly, the formation of ETs was observed not only when coelomocytes were studied ex vivo, but also in vivo, directly in the earthworm coelom. These ETs were composed of extDNA, heat shock proteins (HSP27) and H3 histones. Furthermore, the formation of E. andrei ETs depended on activity of serine proteases, including elastase-like activity. Moreover, ETs interconnected and hold together aggregating coelomocytes, a processes proceeding encapsulation. In conclusion, the study confirms ET formation by earthworms, and unravels mechanisms leading to ET formation and encapsulation in invertebrates. PMID:27416067

  9. Overland flow generation mechanisms affected by topsoil treatment: Application to soil conservation

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Hueso-González, P.; Ruiz-Sinoga, J. D.; Martínez-Murillo, J. F.; Lavee, H.

    2015-01-01

    Hortonian overland-flow is responsible for significant amounts of soil loss in Mediterranean geomorphological systems. Restoring the native vegetation is the most effective way to control runoff and sediment yield. During the seeding and plant establishment, vegetation cover may be better sustained if soil is amended with an external source. Four amendments were applied in an experimental set of plots: straw mulching (SM); mulch with chipped branches of Aleppo Pine (Pinus halepensis L.) (PM); TerraCottem hydroabsorbent polymer (HP); and sewage sludge (RU). Plots were afforested following the same spatial pattern, and amendments were mixed with the soil at the rate 10 Mg ha- 1. This research demonstrates the role played by the treatments in overland flow generation mechanism. On one hand, the high macroporosity of SM and PM, together with the fact that soil moisture increased with depth, explains weak overland flow and thus low sediment yield due to saturation conditions. Therefore, regarding overland flow and sediment yield, RU behaves similarly to SM and PM. On the other hand, when HP was applied, overland flow developed quickly with relatively high amounts. This, together with the decrease downward in soil moisture along the soil profile, proved that mechanisms of overland flow are of the Hortonian type.

  10. Epoxycarotenoid-mediated synthesis of abscisic acid in Physcomitrella patens implicating conserved mechanisms for acclimation to hyperosmosis in embryophytes.

    PubMed

    Takezawa, Daisuke; Watanabe, Naoki; Ghosh, Totan Kumar; Saruhashi, Masashi; Suzuki, Atsushi; Ishiyama, Kanako; Somemiya, Shinnosuke; Kobayashi, Masatomo; Sakata, Yoichi

    2015-04-01

    Plants acclimate to environmental stress signals such as cold, drought and hypersalinity, and provoke internal protective mechanisms. Abscisic acid (ABA), a carotenoid-derived phytohormone, which increases in response to the stress signals above, has been suggested to play a key role in the acclimation process in angiosperms, but the role of ABA in basal land plants such as mosses, including its biosynthetic pathways, has not been clarified. Targeted gene disruption of PpABA1, encoding zeaxanthin epoxidase in the moss Physcomitrella patens was conducted to determine the role of endogenous ABA in acclimation processes in mosses. The generated ppaba1 plants were found to accumulate only a small amount of endogenous ABA. The ppaba1 plants showed reduced osmotic acclimation capacity in correlation with reduced dehydration tolerance and accumulation of late embryogenesis abundant proteins. By contrast, cold-induced freezing tolerance was less affected in ppaba1, indicating that endogenous ABA does not play a major role in the regulation of cold acclimation in the moss. Our results suggest that the mechanisms for osmotic acclimation mediated by carotenoid-derived synthesis of ABA are conserved in embryophytes and that acquisition of the mechanisms played a crucial role in terrestrial adaptation and colonization by land plant ancestors. PMID:25545104

  11. Development of the external genitalia: conserved and divergent mechanisms of appendage patterning

    PubMed Central

    Cohn, Martin J.

    2011-01-01

    Over the past decade, the genetics of external genital development has begun to be understood. Male and female external genitalia develop from the genital tubercle. The early tubercle has a superficial resemblance to the limb bud, but an important distinction is that the limb consists only of mesoderm and ectoderm, whereas the genital tubercle also has an endodermal component, the urethral epithelium. Urethral epithelium, which expresses Sonic hedgehog, acts as a signaling region that controls outgrowth and pattern formation, and ultimately differentiates into the urethral tube. While there are intriguing parallels between limb and genital development, recent studies have identified some key differences, including the role of Fgf signaling. Our understanding of the mechanisms of genital development still lags far behind the limb, and major questions remain to be answered, including the molecular nature of the signals that initiate genital budding, sustain outgrowth, induce tissue polarity and orchestrate urethral tubulogenesis. PMID:21465625

  12. Transcriptional Control of Photosynthesis Genes: The Evolutionarily Conserved Regulatory Mechanism in Plastid Genome Function

    PubMed Central

    Puthiyaveetil, Sujith; Ibrahim, Iskander M.; Jeličić, Branka; Tomašić, Ana; Fulgosi, Hrvoje; Allen, John F.

    2010-01-01

    Chloroplast sensor kinase (CSK) is a bacterial-type sensor histidine kinase found in chloroplasts—photosynthetic plastids—in eukaryotic plants and algae. Using a yeast two-hybrid screen, we demonstrate recognition and interactions between: CSK, plastid transcription kinase (PTK), and a bacterial-type RNA polymerase sigma factor-1 (SIG-1). CSK interacts with itself, with SIG-1, and with PTK. PTK also interacts directly with SIG-1. PTK has previously been shown to catalyze phosphorylation of plastid-encoded RNA polymerase (PEP), suppressing plastid transcription nonspecifically. Phospho-PTK is inactive as a PEP kinase. Here, we propose that phospho-CSK acts as a PTK kinase, releasing PTK repression of chloroplast transcription, while CSK also acts as a SIG-1 kinase, blocking transcription specifically at the gene promoter of chloroplast photosystem I. Oxidation of the photosynthetic electron carrier plastoquinone triggers phosphorylation of CSK, inducing chloroplast photosystem II while suppressing photosystem I. CSK places photosystem gene transcription under the control of photosynthetic electron transport. This redox signaling pathway has its origin in cyanobacteria, photosynthetic prokaryotes from which chloroplasts evolved. The persistence of this mechanism in cytoplasmic organelles of photosynthetic eukaryotes is in precise agreement with the CoRR hypothesis for the function of organellar genomes: the plastid genome and its primary gene products are Co-located for Redox Regulation. Genes are retained in plastids primarily in order for their expression to be subject to this rapid and robust redox regulatory transcriptional control mechanism, whereas plastid genes also encode genetic system components, such as some ribosomal proteins and RNAs, that exist in order to support this primary, redox regulatory control of photosynthesis genes. Plastid genome function permits adaptation of the photosynthetic apparatus to changing environmental conditions of light

  13. Protein Folding and Unfolding Under Force

    PubMed Central

    Jagannathan, Bharat; Marqusee, Susan

    2014-01-01

    The recent revolution in optics and instrumentation has enabled the study of protein folding using extremely low mechanical forces as the denaturant. This exciting development has led to the observation of the protein folding process at single molecule resolution and its response to mechanical force. Here, we describe the principles and experimental details of force spectroscopy on proteins, with a focus on the optical tweezers instrument. Several recent results will be discussed to highlight the importance of this technique in addressing a variety of questions in the protein folding field. PMID:23784721

  14. Fold interaction and wavelength selection in 3D models of multilayer detachment folding

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Fernandez, Naiara; Kaus, Boris J. P.

    2014-09-01

    Many fold-and-thrust belts are dominated by folding and exhibit a fairly regular fold-spacing. Yet, in map-view, the aspect ratio of doubly-plunging anticlines varies considerably from very elongated, and sometimes slightly curved, cylindrical folds to nearly circular, dome-like structures. In addition, the fold spacing often varies significantly around an average value. So far, it remains unclear whether these features are consistent with a folding instability. Therefore, we here study the dynamics of multilayer detachment folding, process by which shortening can be accommodated in thin-skinned fold-and-thrust belts. We start by analysing the physics of this process by using both a semi-analytical thick plate theory and numerical simulations. Results show that several different folding modes occur, about half of which are affected by gravity and have a wavelength that depends on the background deformation rate. Non-dimensional expressions are derived that predict the dominant wavelength and growth rate of each of these folding modes and mechanical phase diagrams are presented that illustrate the applicability of each of the modes. Next, we perform 3D simulations and compare the results with those of 2D models and analytical theory. Both 2D and 3D numerical simulations have wavelengths that are in good agreement with the analytical predictions. In the high-resolution 3D simulations the lateral growth of folds is studied, in particular with respect to fold segment interactions and evolution of fold width-length aspect ratio. The numerical simulations show a number of similarities with the Fars region of the Zagros fold-and-thrust belt including a large range of fold aspect ratio and a normally distributed fold wavelength around a dominant one.

  15. An evolutionarily conserved RNase-based mechanism for repression of transcriptional positive autoregulation

    PubMed Central

    Wurtmann, Elisabeth J.; Ratushny, Alexander V.; Pan, Min; Beer, Karlyn D.; Aitchison, John D.; Baliga, Nitin S.

    2014-01-01

    Summary It is known that environmental context influences the degree of regulation at the transcriptional and post-transcriptional levels. However, the principles governing the differential usage and interplay of regulation at these two levels are not clear. Here, we show that the integration of transcriptional and post-transcriptional regulatory mechanisms in a characteristic network motif drives efficient environment-dependent state transitions. Through phenotypic screening, systems analysis, and rigorous experimental validation, we discovered an RNase (VNG2099C) in Halobacterium salinarum that is transcriptionally co-regulated with genes of the aerobic physiologic state but acts on transcripts of the anaerobic state. Through modeling and experimentation we show that this arrangement generates an efficient state-transition switch, within which RNase-repression of a transcriptional positive autoregulation (RPAR) loop is critical for shutting down ATP-consuming active potassium uptake to reserve energy required for salinity adaptation under aerobic, high potassium, or dark conditions. Subsequently, we discovered that many Escherichia coli operons with energy-associated functions are also putatively controlled by RPAR indicating that this network motif may have evolved independently in phylogenetically distant organisms. Thus, our data suggest that interplay of transcriptional and post-transcriptional regulation in the RPAR motifis a generalized principle for efficient environment-dependent state transitions across prokaryotes. PMID:24612392

  16. One of the possible mechanisms of amyloid fibrils formation based on the sizes of primary and secondary folding nuclei of Aβ40 and Aβ42.

    PubMed

    Dovidchenko, Nikita V; Glyakina, Anna V; Selivanova, Olga M; Grigorashvili, Elizaveta I; Suvorina, Mariya Yu; Dzhus, Ulyana F; Mikhailina, Alisa O; Shiliaev, Nikita G; Marchenkov, Victor V; Surin, Alexey K; Galzitskaya, Oxana V

    2016-06-01

    In the presented paper, theoretical as well as electron microscopy and X-ray diffraction experimental approaches were employed for studding the process of Aβ amyloid formation. Using quantitative estimates of a number of monomers which form the nuclei of amyloid fibrils the sizes of folding nuclei of amyloid fibrils for Aβ40 and 42 have been determined for the first time. We have shown that the size of the primary nucleus of Aβ42 peptide fibrils corresponds to 3 monomers, the size of the secondary nucleus for this peptide is 2 monomers. Applying the same analysis to Aβ40 we conclude that the size of the primary nucleus is 2 monomers, and the size of the secondary nucleus is one monomer. Summation of our theoretical and experimental results has allowed us to propose a new model of the structural organization of amyloid fibrils. Our model suggests that the generation of fibrils takes place along the following simplified pathway: a monomer→a ring oligomer→a mature fibril consisting of ring oligomers. These data shed more light upon our understanding of what sizes of the oligomers could represent main targets for future therapies (tetramers for Aβ42 and trimers for Aβ40), and aid in the development of inhibitors of Aβ40 and 42 oligomer formation. PMID:27016282

  17. Quantitative Morphology of Epithelial Folds.

    PubMed

    Štorgel, Nick; Krajnc, Matej; Mrak, Polona; Štrus, Jasna; Ziherl, Primož

    2016-01-01

    The shape of spatially modulated epithelial morphologies such as villi and crypts is usually associated with the epithelium-stroma area mismatch leading to buckling. We propose an alternative mechanical model based on intraepithelial stresses generated by differential tensions of apical, lateral, and basal sides of cells as well as on the elasticity of the basement membrane. We use it to theoretically study longitudinal folds in simple epithelia and we identify four types of corrugated morphologies: compact, invaginated, evaginated, and wavy. The obtained tissue contours and thickness profiles are compared to epithelial folds observed in invertebrates and vertebrates, and for most samples, the agreement is within the estimated experimental error. Our model establishes the groove-crest modulation of tissue thickness as a morphometric parameter that can, together with the curvature profile, be used to estimate the relative differential apicobasal tension in the epithelium. PMID:26745429

  18. Folded supersymmetry with a twist

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Cohen, Timothy; Craig, Nathaniel; Lou, Hou Keong; Pinner, David

    2016-03-01

    Folded supersymmetry ( f-SUSY) stabilizes the weak scale against radiative corrections from the top sector via scalar partners whose gauge quantum numbers differ from their Standard Model counterparts. This non-trivial pairing of states can be realized in extra-dimensional theories with appropriate supersymmetry-breaking boundary conditions. We present a class of calculable f-SUSY models that are parametrized by a non-trivial twist in 5D boundary conditions and can accommodate the observed Higgs mass and couplings. Although the distinctive phenomenology associated with the novel folded states should provide strong evidence for this mechanism, the most stringent constraints are currently placed by conventional supersymmetry searches. These models remain minimally fine-tuned in light of LHC8 data and provide a range of both standard and exotic signatures accessible at LHC13.

  19. Programmable matter by folding

    PubMed Central

    Hawkes, E.; An, B.; Benbernou, N. M.; Tanaka, H.; Kim, S.; Demaine, E. D.; Rus, D.; Wood, R. J.

    2010-01-01

    Programmable matter is a material whose properties can be programmed to achieve specific shapes or stiffnesses upon command. This concept requires constituent elements to interact and rearrange intelligently in order to meet the goal. This paper considers achieving programmable sheets that can form themselves in different shapes autonomously by folding. Past approaches to creating transforming machines have been limited by the small feature sizes, the large number of components, and the associated complexity of communication among the units. We seek to mitigate these difficulties through the unique concept of self-folding origami with universal crease patterns. This approach exploits a single sheet composed of interconnected triangular sections. The sheet is able to fold into a set of predetermined shapes using embedded actuation. To implement this self-folding origami concept, we have developed a scalable end-to-end planning and fabrication process. Given a set of desired objects, the system computes an optimized design for a single sheet and multiple controllers to achieve each of the desired objects. The material, called programmable matter by folding, is an example of a system capable of achieving multiple shapes for multiple functions. PMID:20616049

  20. Folding without charges

    PubMed Central

    Kurnik, Martin; Hedberg, Linda; Danielsson, Jens; Oliveberg, Mikael

    2012-01-01

    Surface charges of proteins have in several cases been found to function as “structural gatekeepers,” which avoid unwanted interactions by negative design, for example, in the control of protein aggregation and binding. The question is then if side-chain charges, due to their desolvation penalties, play a corresponding role in protein folding by avoiding competing, misfolded traps? To find out, we removed all 32 side-chain charges from the 101-residue protein S6 from Thermus thermophilus. The results show that the charge-depleted S6 variant not only retains its native structure and cooperative folding transition, but folds also faster than the wild-type protein. In addition, charge removal unleashes pronounced aggregation on longer timescales. S6 provides thus an example where the bias toward native contacts of a naturally evolved protein sequence is independent of charges, and point at a fundamental difference in the codes for folding and intermolecular interaction: specificity in folding is governed primarily by hydrophobic packing and hydrogen bonding, whereas solubility and binding relies critically on the interplay of side-chain charges. PMID:22454493

  1. Conserved behavioral and genetic mechanisms in the pre-hatching molt of the nematode Pristionchus pacificus

    PubMed Central

    2014-01-01

    Background During development, juvenile nematodes undergo four molts. Although the number of molts appears to be constant within the Nematoda, the timing of the first molt can occur either before or after hatching. A previous study indicates that, as in some parasitic nematode lineages, a pre-hatching juvenile stage also exists in Diplogastrid nematodes. A detailed description of these sequence of events has yet to be shown for any single species. Findings To delineate the timing of the pre-hatching molt in the beetle-associated Pristionchus pacificus, we tracked individual mid-J1 stage worms inside the eggshell through the J1-J2 transition and hatching. We found that active movement ended 21 hours after egg-laying, followed by lethargus and hatching. We inferred that lethargus behavior represents the onset of the first molt, which precedes each post-hatching molt in C. elegans and P. pacificus. The onset of the J1-J2 molt was also marked by the upregulation of the P. pacificus molting marker Ppa-pnhr-1. We further corroborated the pre-hatching molt with the isolation of two genetic mutants that exhibited aberrant molting both inside the egg and after hatching, as characterized by protracted and often-aborted shedding of the old cuticle. Conclusion Our results describe in detail the pre-hatching juvenile molt in P. pacificus, provide strong visual evidence of a pre-hatching molt, and show support for common genetic mechanisms regulating molting in the pre-hatching and post-hatching developmental stages. Our findings support the hypothesis that the evolution of pre-hatching development in Diplogastrid nematodes is likely due to a heterochronic shift between the timing of the first molt and hatching. PMID:25276336

  2. Overland flow generation mechanisms affected by topsoil treatment: Application to soil conservation

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    González Paloma, Hueso; Juan Francisco, Martinez-Murillo; Damian, Ruiz-Sinoga Jose; Hanoch, Lavee

    2015-04-01

    Hortonian overland-flow is responsible for significant amounts of soil loss in Mediterranean geomorphological systems. Restoring the native vegetation is the most effective way to control runoff and sediment yield. During the seeding and plant establishment, vegetation cover may be better sustained if soil is amended with an external source. Four amendments were applied in an experimental set of plots: straw mulching (SM); mulch with chipped branches of Aleppo Pine (Pinus halepensis L.) (PM); TerraCotten hydroabsobent polymers (HP); sewage sludge (RU); and control (C). Plots were afforested following the same spatial pattern, and amendments were mixed with the soil at the rate 10 Mg ha-1. This research demonstrates the role played by the treatments in overland flow generation mechanism (runoff, overland flow and soil moisture along the soil profile). The general overland flow characteristics showed that in the C plots the average overland flow was 8.0 ± 22.0 l per event, and the HP plots produced a similar mean value (8.1 ± 20.1 l). The average overland flow per event was significantly less for soil amended with SM, PM or RU (2.7 ± 8.3 l; 1.3 ± 3.5 l and 2.2 ± 5.9 l, respectively). There was a similar trend with respect to the maximum overland flow. The mean sediment yield per event was relatively high in the C and HP plots (8.6 ± 27.8 kg and 14.8 ± 43.4 kg, respectively), while significantly lower values were registered in the SM, PM and RU plots (0.4 ± 1.0 kg; 0.2 ± 0.3 kg and 0.2 ± 0.3 kg, respectively). Very similar trends were found for the maximum sediment yield. Regarding to the soil moisture values, there was a difference in the trends between the C and HP plots and the SM, PM and RU plots. In the C and HP plots the general trend was for a decrease in soil moisture downward through the soil profile, while in the SM, PM and RU plots the soil moisture remained relatively constant or increased, except for the RU treatment in which the soil moisture

  3. Synthesizing folded band chaos.

    PubMed

    Corron, Ned J; Hayes, Scott T; Pethel, Shawn D; Blakely, Jonathan N

    2007-04-01

    A randomly driven linear filter that synthesizes Lorenz-like, reverse-time chaos is shown also to produce Rössler-like folded band wave forms when driven using a different encoding of the random source. The relationship between the topological entropy of the random source, dissipation in the linear filter, and the positive Lyapunov exponent for the reverse-time wave form is exposed. The two drive encodings are viewed as grammar restrictions on a more general encoding that produces a chaotic superset encompassing both the Lorenz butterfly and Rössler folded band paradigms of nonlinear dynamics. PMID:17500950

  4. Transcriptomic analysis of tail regeneration in the lizard Anolis carolinensis reveals activation of conserved vertebrate developmental and repair mechanisms.

    PubMed

    Hutchins, Elizabeth D; Markov, Glenn J; Eckalbar, Walter L; George, Rajani M; King, Jesse M; Tokuyama, Minami A; Geiger, Lauren A; Emmert, Nataliya; Ammar, Michael J; Allen, April N; Siniard, Ashley L; Corneveaux, Jason J; Fisher, Rebecca E; Wade, Juli; DeNardo, Dale F; Rawls, J Alan; Huentelman, Matthew J; Wilson-Rawls, Jeanne; Kusumi, Kenro

    2014-01-01

    Lizards, which are amniote vertebrates like humans, are able to lose and regenerate a functional tail. Understanding the molecular basis of this process would advance regenerative approaches in amniotes, including humans. We have carried out the first transcriptomic analysis of tail regeneration in a lizard, the green anole Anolis carolinensis, which revealed 326 differentially expressed genes activating multiple developmental and repair mechanisms. Specifically, genes involved in wound response, hormonal regulation, musculoskeletal development, and the Wnt and MAPK/FGF pathways were differentially expressed along the regenerating tail axis. Furthermore, we identified 2 microRNA precursor families, 22 unclassified non-coding RNAs, and 3 novel protein-coding genes significantly enriched in the regenerating tail. However, high levels of progenitor/stem cell markers were not observed in any region of the regenerating tail. Furthermore, we observed multiple tissue-type specific clusters of proliferating cells along the regenerating tail, not localized to the tail tip. These findings predict a different mechanism of regeneration in the lizard than the blastema model described in the salamander and the zebrafish, which are anamniote vertebrates. Thus, lizard tail regrowth involves the activation of conserved developmental and wound response pathways, which are potential targets for regenerative medical therapies. PMID:25140675

  5. Transcriptomic Analysis of Tail Regeneration in the Lizard Anolis carolinensis Reveals Activation of Conserved Vertebrate Developmental and Repair Mechanisms

    PubMed Central

    Hutchins, Elizabeth D.; Markov, Glenn J.; Eckalbar, Walter L.; George, Rajani M.; King, Jesse M.; Tokuyama, Minami A.; Geiger, Lauren A.; Emmert, Nataliya; Ammar, Michael J.; Allen, April N.; Siniard, Ashley L.; Corneveaux, Jason J.; Fisher, Rebecca E.; Wade, Juli; DeNardo, Dale F.; Rawls, J. Alan; Huentelman, Matthew J.; Wilson-Rawls, Jeanne; Kusumi, Kenro

    2014-01-01

    Lizards, which are amniote vertebrates like humans, are able to lose and regenerate a functional tail. Understanding the molecular basis of this process would advance regenerative approaches in amniotes, including humans. We have carried out the first transcriptomic analysis of tail regeneration in a lizard, the green anole Anolis carolinensis, which revealed 326 differentially expressed genes activating multiple developmental and repair mechanisms. Specifically, genes involved in wound response, hormonal regulation, musculoskeletal development, and the Wnt and MAPK/FGF pathways were differentially expressed along the regenerating tail axis. Furthermore, we identified 2 microRNA precursor families, 22 unclassified non-coding RNAs, and 3 novel protein-coding genes significantly enriched in the regenerating tail. However, high levels of progenitor/stem cell markers were not observed in any region of the regenerating tail. Furthermore, we observed multiple tissue-type specific clusters of proliferating cells along the regenerating tail, not localized to the tail tip. These findings predict a different mechanism of regeneration in the lizard than the blastema model described in the salamander and the zebrafish, which are anamniote vertebrates. Thus, lizard tail regrowth involves the activation of conserved developmental and wound response pathways, which are potential targets for regenerative medical therapies. PMID:25140675

  6. Folding thermodynamics of pseudoknotted chain conformations

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Kopeikin, Zoia; Chen, Shi-Jie

    2006-04-01

    We develop a statistical mechanical framework for the folding thermodynamics of pseudoknotted structures. As applications of the theory, we investigate the folding stability and the free energy landscapes for both the thermal and the mechanical unfolding of pseudoknotted chains. For the mechanical unfolding process, we predict the force-extension curves, from which we can obtain the information about structural transitions in the unfolding process. In general, a pseudoknotted structure unfolds through multiple structural transitions. The interplay between the helix stems and the loops plays an important role in the folding stability of pseudoknots. For instance, variations in loop sizes can lead to the destabilization of some intermediate states and change the (equilibrium) folding pathways (e.g., two helix stems unfold either cooperatively or sequentially). In both thermal and mechanical unfolding, depending on the nucleotide sequence, misfolded intermediate states can emerge in the folding process. In addition, thermal and mechanical unfoldings often have different (equilibrium) pathways. For example, for certain sequences, the misfolded intermediates, which generally have longer tails, can fold, unfold, and refold again in the pulling process, which means that these intermediates can switch between two different average end-end extensions.

  7. Testing an ecophysiological mechanism of morphological plasticity in pupfish and its relevance to conservation efforts for endangered Devils Hole pupfish.

    PubMed

    Lema, Sean C; Nevitt, Gabrielle A

    2006-09-01

    Imperiled species that have been translocated or established in captivity can show rapid alterations in morphology and behavior, but the proximate mechanisms of such phenotypic changes are rarely known. Devils Hole pupfish (Cyprinodon diabolis) are endemic to a single desert pool and are characterized by a small body, large head and eyes, and lack of pelvic fins. To lessen the risk of extinction, additional populations of C. diabolis were established in artificial refuges. Yet, pupfish in these refuges rapidly shifted to a larger body, smaller head and eyes, and greater body depth. Here we examined how food availability and temperature, which differ between these habitats, influence morphological development in closely related Amargosa River pupfish (Cyprinodon nevadensis amargosae). We were interested in knowing whether these environmental factors could developmentally shift Amargosa River pupfish toward the morphology typical of pupfish in Devil's Hole. By regulating food ration, we created groups of pupfish with low, medium and high growth rates. Pupfish with low growth showed proportionally larger head and eyes, smaller body depth, and reduction in pelvic fin development. Elevated temperature further inhibited pelvic fin development in all treatments. Pupfish in the low growth group also showed reduced levels of thyroid hormone, suggesting a possible physiological mechanism underlying these morphological changes. To test this mechanism further, pupfish were reared with goitrogens to pharmacologically inhibit endogenous thyroid hormone production. Pupfish given goitrogens developed larger heads and eyes, shallower bodies, and reduced pelvic fins. Taken together, our results suggest that changes in environmental factors affecting the growth and thyroid hormone status of juvenile pupfish may play a developmental role in generating the morphological differences between C. diabolis in Devil's Hole and the refuges. These findings illustrate the need to incorporate a

  8. Molecular gymnastics: serpin structure, folding and misfolding.

    PubMed

    Whisstock, James C; Bottomley, Stephen P

    2006-12-01

    The native state of serpins represents a long-lived intermediate or metastable structure on the serpin folding pathway. Upon interaction with a protease, the serpin trap is sprung and the molecule continues to fold into a more stable conformation. However, thermodynamic stability can also be achieved through alternative, unproductive folding pathways that result in the formation of inactive conformations. Our increasing understanding of the mechanism of protease inhibition and the dynamics of native serpin structures has begun to reveal how evolution has harnessed the actual process of protein folding (rather than the final folded outcome) to elegantly achieve function. The cost of using metastability for function, however, is an increased propensity for misfolding. PMID:17079131

  9. Protein folding at single-molecule resolution

    PubMed Central

    Ferreon, Allan Chris M.; Deniz, Ashok A.

    2011-01-01

    The protein folding reaction carries great significance for cellular function and hence continues to be the research focus of a large interdisciplinary protein science community. Single-molecule methods are providing new and powerful tools for dissecting the mechanisms of this complex process by virtue of their ability to provide views of protein structure and dynamics without associated ensemble averaging. This review briefly introduces common FRET and force methods, and then explores several areas of protein folding where single-molecule experiments have yielded insights. These include exciting new information about folding landscapes, dynamics, intermediates, unfolded ensembles, intrinsically disordered proteins, assisted folding and biomechanical unfolding. Emerging and future work is expected to include advances in single-molecule techniques aimed at such investigations, and increasing work on more complex systems from both the physics and biology standpoints, including folding and dynamics of systems of interacting proteins and of proteins in cells and organisms. PMID:21303706

  10. Single-molecule Studies of Riboswitch Folding

    PubMed Central

    Savinov, Andrew; Perez, Christian F.; Block, Steven M.

    2014-01-01

    The folding dynamics of riboswitches are central to their ability to modulate gene expression in response to environmental cues. In most cases, a structural competition between the formation of a ligand-binding aptamer and an expression platform (or some other competing off-state) determines the regulatory outcome. Here, we review single-molecule studies of riboswitch folding and function, predominantly carried out using single-molecule FRET or optical trapping approaches. Recent results have supplied new insights into riboswitch folding energy landscapes, the mechanisms of ligand binding, the roles played by divalent ions, the applicability of hierarchical folding models, and kinetic vs. thermodynamic control schemes. We anticipate that future work, based on improved data sets and potentially combining multiple experimental techniques, will enable the development of more complete models for complex RNA folding processes. PMID:24727093

  11. Chaperonin-mediated Protein Folding

    PubMed Central

    Horwich, Arthur L.

    2013-01-01

    We have been studying chaperonins these past twenty years through an initial discovery of an action in protein folding, analysis of structure, and elucidation of mechanism. Some of the highlights of these studies were presented recently upon sharing the honor of the 2013 Herbert Tabor Award with my early collaborator, Ulrich Hartl, at the annual meeting of the American Society for Biochemistry and Molecular Biology in Boston. Here, some of the major findings are recounted, particularly recognizing my collaborators, describing how I met them and how our great times together propelled our thinking and experiments. PMID:23803606

  12. Modelling of lateral fold growth and fold linkage: Applications to fold-and-thrust belt tectonics

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Grasemann, Bernhard; Schmalholz, Stefan

    2013-04-01

    We use a finite element model to investigate the three-dimensional fold growth and interference of two initially isolated fold segments. The most critical parameter, which controls the fold linkage mode, is the phase difference between the laterally growing fold hinge lines: 1) "Linear-linkage" yields a sub-cylindrical fold with a saddle at the location where the two initial folds linked. 2) "Oblique-linkage" produces a curved fold resembling a Type II refold structure. 3) "Oblique-no-linkage" results in two curved folds with fold axes plunging in opposite directions. 4) "Linear-no-linkage" yields a fold train of two separate sub-cylindrical folds with fold axes plunging in opposite directions. The transition from linkage to no-linkage occurs when the fold separation between the initially isolated folds is slightly larger than one half of the low-amplitude fold wavelength. The model results compare well with previously published plasticine analogue models and can be directly applied to the investigation of fold growth history in fold-and-thust belts. An excellent natural example of lateral fold linkage is described from the Zagros fold-and-thrust belt in the Kurdistan Region of Iraq. The fold growth in this region is not controlled by major thrust faults but the shortening of the Paleozoic to Cenozoic passive margin sediments of the Arabian plate occurred mainly by detachment folding. The sub-cylindrical anticlines with hinge-parallel lengths of more than 50 km have not developed from single sub-cylindrical embryonic folds but they have merged from different fold segments that joined laterally during fold amplification and lateral fold growth. Linkage points are marked by geomorphological saddle points which are structurally the lowermost points of antiforms and points of principal curvatures with opposite sign. Linkage points can significantly influence the migration of mineral-rich fluids and hydrocarbons and are therefore of great economic importance.

  13. A New Use for a Familiar Fold: the X-Ray Crystal Structure of GTP-Bound GTP Cyclohydrolase III From Methanocaldococcus Jannaschii Reveals a Two Metal Ion Catalytic Mechanism

    SciTech Connect

    Morrison, S.D.; Roberts, S.A.; Zegeer, A.M.; Montfort, W.R.; Bandarian, V.

    2009-05-26

    GTP cyclohydrolase (GCH) III from Methanocaldococcus jannaschii, which catalyzes the conversion of GTP to 2-amino-5-formylamino-6-ribosylamino-4(3H)-pyrimidinone 5'-phosphate (FAPy), has been shown to require Mg{sup 2+} for catalytic activity and is activated by monovalent cations such as K{sup +} and ammonium [Graham, D. E., Xu, H., and White, R. H. (2002) Biochemistry 41, 15074-15084]. The reaction is formally identical to that catalyzed by a GCH II ortholog (SCO 6655) from Streptomyces coelicolor; however, SCO 6655, like other GCH II proteins, is a zinc-containing protein. The structure of GCH III complexed with GTP solved at 2 {angstrom} resolution clearly shows that GCH III adopts a distinct fold that is closely related to the palm domains of phosphodiesterases, such as DNA polymerase I. GCH III is a tetramer of identical subunits; each monomer is composed of an N- and a C-terminal domain that adopt nearly superimposible structures, suggesting that the protein has arisen by gene duplication. Three metal ions were located in the active site, two of which occupy positions that are analogous to those occupied by divalent metal ions in the structures of a number of palm domain containing proteins, such as DNA polymerase I. Two conserved Asp residues that coordinate the metal ions, which are also found in palm domain containing proteins, are observed in GCH III. Site-directed variants (Asp{yields}Asn) of these residues in GCH III are less active than wild-type. The third metal ion, most likely a potassium ion, is involved in substrate recognition through coordination of O6 of GTP. The arrangement of the metal ions in the active site suggests that GCH III utilizes two metal ion catalysis. The structure of GCH III extends the repertoire of possible reactions with a palm fold to include cyclohydrolase chemistry.

  14. The TLQP-21 Peptide Activates the G-protein-coupled receptor C3aR1 via a Folding-upon-Binding Mechanism

    PubMed Central

    Severini, Cinzia; Gopinath, Tata; Braun, Patrick D.; Sassano, Maria F.; Gurney, Allison; Roth, Bryan L.; Vulchanova, Lucy; Possenti, Roberta; Veglia, Gianluigi; Bartolomucci, Alessandro

    2014-01-01

    SUMMARY TLQP-21, a VGF-encoded peptide is emerging as a novel target for obesity-associated disorders. TLQP-21 is found in the sympathetic nerve terminals in the adipose tissue and targets the G-protein-coupled-receptor (GPCR) Complement-3a-Receptor1 (C3aR1). So far, the mechanisms of TLQP-21-induced receptor activation remained unexplored. Here, we report that TLQP-21 is intrinsically disordered and undergoes a disorder-to-order transition, adopting an α-helical conformation, upon targeting cells expressing the C3aR1. We determined that the hot spots for TLQP-21 are located at the C-terminus, with mutations in the last four amino acids progressively reducing the bioactivity and, a single site mutation (R21A) or C-terminal amidation abolishing its function completely. Interestingly, the human TLQP-21 sequence carrying a S20A substitution activates the human C3aR1 receptor with lower potency compared to the rodent sequence. These studies reveal the mechanism of action of TLQP-21 and provide molecular templates for designing agonists and antagonists to modulate C3aR1 functions. PMID:25456411

  15. The TLQP-21 peptide activates the G-protein-coupled receptor C3aR1 via a folding-upon-binding mechanism.

    PubMed

    Cero, Cheryl; Vostrikov, Vitaly V; Verardi, Raffaello; Severini, Cinzia; Gopinath, Tata; Braun, Patrick D; Sassano, Maria F; Gurney, Allison; Roth, Bryan L; Vulchanova, Lucy; Possenti, Roberta; Veglia, Gianluigi; Bartolomucci, Alessandro

    2014-12-01

    TLQP-21, a VGF-encoded peptide is emerging as a novel target for obesity-associated disorders. TLQP-21 is found in the sympathetic nerve terminals in the adipose tissue and targets the G-protein-coupled receptor complement-3a receptor1 (C3aR1). The mechanisms of TLQP-21-induced receptor activation remain unexplored. Here, we report that TLQP-21 is intrinsically disordered and undergoes a disorder-to-order transition, adopting an α-helical conformation upon targeting cells expressing the C3aR1. We determined that the hot spots for TLQP-21 are located at the C terminus, with mutations in the last four amino acids progressively reducing the bioactivity and, a single site mutation (R21A) or C-terminal amidation abolishing its function completely. Additionally, the human TLQP-21 sequence carrying a S20A substitution activates the human C3aR1 receptor with lower potency compared to the rodent sequence. These studies reveal the mechanism of action of TLQP-21 and provide molecular templates for designing agonists and antagonists to modulate C3aR1 functions. PMID:25456411

  16. Quantification of a Helical Origami Fold

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Dai, Eric; Han, Xiaomin; Chen, Zi

    2015-03-01

    Origami, the Japanese art of paper folding, is traditionally viewed as an amusing pastime and medium of artistic expression. However, in recent years, origami has served as a source of inspiration for innovations in science and engineering. Here, we present the geometric and mechanical properties of a twisting origami fold. The origami structure created by the fold exhibits several interesting properties, including rigid foldibility, local bistability and finely tunable helical coiling, with control over pitch, radius and handedness of the helix. In addition, the pattern generated by the fold closely mimics the twist buckling patterns shown by thin materials, for example, a mobius strip. We use six parameters of the twisting origami pattern to generate a fully tunable graphical model of the fold. Finally, we present a mathematical model of the local bistability of the twisting origami fold. Our study elucidates the mechanisms behind the helical coiling and local bistability of the twisting origami fold, with potential applications in robotics and deployable structures. Acknowledgment to Branco Weiss Fellowship for funding.

  17. Four residues of propeptide are essential for precursor folding of nattokinase.

    PubMed

    Jia, Yan; Cao, Xinhua; Deng, Yu; Bao, Wei; Tang, Changyan; Ding, Hanjing; Zheng, Zhongliang; Zou, Guolin

    2014-11-01

    Subtilisin propeptide functions as an intramolecular chaperone that guides precursor folding. Nattokinase, a member of subtilisin family, is synthesized as a precursor consisting of a signal peptide, a propeptide, and a subtilisin domain, and the mechanism of its folding remains to be understood. In this study, the essential residues of nattokinase propeptide which contribute to precursor folding were determined. Deletion analysis showed that the conserved regions in propeptide were important for precursor folding. Single-site and multi-site mutagenesis studies confirmed the role of Tyr10, Gly13, Gly34, and Gly35. During stage (i) and (ii) of precursor folding, Tyr10 and Gly13 would form the part of interface with subtilisin domain. While Gly34 and Gly35 connected with an α-helix that would stabilize the structure of propeptide. The quadruple Ala mutation, Y10A/G13A/G34A/G35A, resulted in a loss of the chaperone function for the propeptide. This work showed the essential residues of propeptide for precursor folding via secondary structure and kinetic parameter analyses. PMID:25267722

  18. Network measures for protein folding state discrimination

    PubMed Central

    Menichetti, Giulia; Fariselli, Piero; Remondini, Daniel

    2016-01-01

    Proteins fold using a two-state or multi-state kinetic mechanisms, but up to now there is not a first-principle model to explain this different behavior. We exploit the network properties of protein structures by introducing novel observables to address the problem of classifying the different types of folding kinetics. These observables display a plain physical meaning, in terms of vibrational modes, possible configurations compatible with the native protein structure, and folding cooperativity. The relevance of these observables is supported by a classification performance up to 90%, even with simple classifiers such as discriminant analysis. PMID:27464796

  19. Polymer films removed from solid surfaces by nanostructured fluids: microscopic mechanism and implications for the conservation of cultural heritage.

    PubMed

    Raudino, Martina; Selvolini, Giulia; Montis, Costanza; Baglioni, Michele; Bonini, Massimo; Berti, Debora; Baglioni, Piero

    2015-03-25

    Complex fluids based on amphiphilic formulations are emerging, particularly in the field of conservation of works of art, as effective and safe liquid media for the removal of hydrophobic polymeric coatings. The comprehension of the cleaning mechanism is key to designing tailored fluids for this purpose. However, the interaction between nanostructured fluids and hydrophobic polymer films is still poorly understood. In this study, we show how the combination of confocal laser scanning microscopy (CLSM) and atomic force microscopy (AFM) provides interesting and complementary insight into this process. We focused on the interaction between an ethyl methacrylate/methyl acrylate 70:30 copolymer film deposited onto a glass surface and a water/nonionic surfactant/2-butanone (MEK) ternary system, with MEK being a good solvent and water being a nonsolvent for the polymer. Our results indicate a synergy between the organic solvent and the surfactant assemblies: MEK rapidly swells the outer layers of the polymer film allowing for the subsequent diffusion of solvent molecules, while the amphiphile decreases the interfacial energy between the polymeric coating and the liquid phase, favoring dewetting and dispersion of swollen polymer droplets in the aqueous phase. The chemical nature of the surfactant and the microstructure of the assemblies determine both the kinetics and the overall efficiency of polymer removal, as assessed by comparing the behavior of similar formulations containing an anionic surfactant (sodium dodecyl sulfate, SDS). PMID:25723546

  20. Hippocampal–Dorsolateral Prefrontal Coupling as a Species-Conserved Cognitive Mechanism: A Human Translational Imaging Study

    PubMed Central

    Bähner, Florian; Demanuele, Charmaine; Schweiger, Janina; Gerchen, Martin F; Zamoscik, Vera; Ueltzhöffer, Kai; Hahn, Tim; Meyer, Patric; Flor, Herta; Durstewitz, Daniel; Tost, Heike; Kirsch, Peter; Plichta, Michael M; Meyer-Lindenberg, Andreas

    2015-01-01

    Hippocampal–prefrontal cortex (HC–PFC) interactions are implicated in working memory (WM) and altered in psychiatric conditions with cognitive impairment such as schizophrenia. While coupling between both structures is crucial for WM performance in rodents, evidence from human studies is conflicting and translation of findings is complicated by the use of differing paradigms across species. We therefore used functional magnetic resonance imaging together with a spatial WM paradigm adapted from rodent research to examine HC–PFC coupling in humans. A PFC–parietal network was functionally connected to hippocampus (HC) during task stages requiring high levels of executive control but not during a matched control condition. The magnitude of coupling in a network comprising HC, bilateral dorsolateral PFC (DLPFC), and right supramarginal gyrus explained one-fourth of the variability in an independent spatial WM task but was unrelated to visual WM performance. HC–DLPFC coupling may thus represent a systems-level mechanism specific to spatial WM that is conserved across species, suggesting its utility for modeling cognitive dysfunction in translational neuroscience. PMID:25578799

  1. The uteroglobin fold.

    PubMed

    Callebaut, I; Poupon, A; Bally, R; Demaret, J P; Housset, D; Delettré, J; Hossenlopp, P; Mornon, J P

    2000-01-01

    Uteroglobin (UTG) forms a fascinating homodimeric structure that binds small- to medium-sized ligands through an internal hydrophobic cavity, located at the interface between the two monomers. Previous studies have shown that UTG fold is not limited to the UTG/CC10 family, whose sequence/structure relationships are highlighted here, but can be extended to the cap domain of Xanthobacter autotrophicus haloalkane dehalogenase. We show here that UTG fold is adopted by several other cap domains within the alpha/beta hydrolase family, making it a well-suited "geode" structure allowing it to sequester various hydrophobic molecules. Additionally, some data about a new crystal form of oxidized rabbit UTG are presented, completing previous structural studies, as well as results from molecular dynamics, suggesting an alternative way for the ligand to reach the internal cavity. PMID:11193783

  2. II. Capsular vaso-mimicry formed by transgenic mammary tumor spheroids implanted ectopically into mouse dorsal skin fold: implications for cellular mechanisms of metastasis

    PubMed Central

    Witkiewicz, Halina

    2013-01-01

    Most cancer patients die of metastatic disease, not primary tumors, while biological mechanisms leading to metastases remain unclear and effective therapies are missing. Using a mouse dorsal skin chamber model we had observed that tumor growth and vasculature formation could be influenced by the way in vitro cultured (avascular) spheroids of N202 breast tumor cells were implanted; co-implantation of lactating breast tissue created stimulating microenvironment, whereas the absence of the graft resulted in temporary tumor dormancy. This report addressed the issue of cellular mechanisms of the vasculogenic switch that ended the dormancy. In situ ultrastructural analysis revealed that the tumors survived in ectopic microenvironment until some of host and tumor stem cells evolved independently into cells initiating the vasculogenic switch. The tumor cells that survived and proliferated under hypoxic conditions for three weeks were supported by erythrogenic autophagy of others. However, the host microenvironment first responded as it would to non-immunogenic foreign bodies, i.e., by encapsulating the tumor spheroids with collagen-producing fibroblasts. That led to a form of vaso-mimicry consisting of tumor cells amid tumor-derived erythrosomes (synonym of erythrocytes), megakaryocytes and platelets, and encapsulating them all, the host fibroblasts. Such capsular vaso-mimicry could potentially facilitate metastasis by fusing with morphologically similar lymphatic vessels or veins. Once incorporated into the host circulatory system, tumor cells could be carried away passively by blood flow, regardless of their genetic heterogeneity. The fake vascular segment would have permeability properties different from genuine vascular endothelium. The capsular vaso-mimicry was different from vasculogenic mimicry earlier observed in metastases-associated malignant tumors where channels formed by tumor cells were said to contain circulating blood. Structures similar to the vasculogenic

  3. Ab initio RNA folding

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Cragnolini, Tristan; Derreumaux, Philippe; Pasquali, Samuela

    2015-06-01

    RNA molecules are essential cellular machines performing a wide variety of functions for which a specific three-dimensional structure is required. Over the last several years, the experimental determination of RNA structures through x-ray crystallography and NMR seems to have reached a plateau in the number of structures resolved each year, but as more and more RNA sequences are being discovered, the need for structure prediction tools to complement experimental data is strong. Theoretical approaches to RNA folding have been developed since the late nineties, when the first algorithms for secondary structure prediction appeared. Over the last 10 years a number of prediction methods for 3D structures have been developed, first based on bioinformatics and data-mining, and more recently based on a coarse-grained physical representation of the systems. In this review we are going to present the challenges of RNA structure prediction and the main ideas behind bioinformatic approaches and physics-based approaches. We will focus on the description of the more recent physics-based phenomenological models and on how they are built to include the specificity of the interactions of RNA bases, whose role is critical in folding. Through examples from different models, we will point out the strengths of physics-based approaches, which are able not only to predict equilibrium structures, but also to investigate dynamical and thermodynamical behavior, and the open challenges to include more key interactions ruling RNA folding.

  4. Chirality and protein folding

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Kwiecinska, Joanna I.; Cieplak, Marek

    2005-05-01

    There are several simple criteria of folding to a native state in model proteins. One of them involves crossing of a threshold value of the root mean square deviation distance away from the native state. Another checks whether all native contacts are established, i.e. whether the interacting amino acids come closer than some characteristic distance. We use Go-like models of proteins and show that such simple criteria may prompt one to declare folding even though fragments of the resulting conformations have a wrong sense of chirality. We propose that a better condition of folding should augment the simple criteria with the requirement that most of the local values of the chirality should be nearly native. The kinetic discrepancy between the simple and compound criteria can be substantially reduced in the Go-like models by providing the Hamiltonian with a term which favours native values of the local chirality. We study the effects of this term as a function of its amplitude and compare it to other models such as ones with side groups and ones with angle-dependent potentials.

  5. Folding within seconds

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Kenkmann, Thomas

    2002-03-01

    Hypervelocity impacts of cosmic projectiles larger than ˜200 m diameter are capable of forming complex craters on Earth. At these craters, shock loading, shock damage, and excavation flow are followed by a gravity-driven collapse of the deep transient cavity. Such impact structures are characterized by a central uplift, a flat crater floor, and a terraced crater rim. Collapse-induced deformation features, like folds and brittle fault zones, have many similarities to tectonic structures. Typical deformation patterns of complex terrestrial impact craters of 5 15 km diameter are compiled and analyzed with respect to their kinematic development. Unlike their tectonic counterparts, deformation structures are always the result of non-plane-strain deformation and are formed in a single event that takes place in seconds to minutes. To understand the high-strain-rate processes, the microstructure of an impact-induced fold of the Crooked Creek impact crater (˜7 km diameter), Missouri, United States, is investigated in detail. A period of 20 30 s at the most is determined for the collapse phase of this crater. The gross plastic deformation behavior of the fold is achieved by localized brittle deformation along millimeter- to centimeter-spaced fault zones, forming a network of veins. Shock damage has fractured ˜40% of grain boundaries. The onset of collapse and associated deformation started in rocks with a reduced cohesion and is friction controlled.

  6. Ab initio RNA folding.

    PubMed

    Cragnolini, Tristan; Derreumaux, Philippe; Pasquali, Samuela

    2015-06-17

    RNA molecules are essential cellular machines performing a wide variety of functions for which a specific three-dimensional structure is required. Over the last several years, the experimental determination of RNA structures through x-ray crystallography and NMR seems to have reached a plateau in the number of structures resolved each year, but as more and more RNA sequences are being discovered, the need for structure prediction tools to complement experimental data is strong. Theoretical approaches to RNA folding have been developed since the late nineties, when the first algorithms for secondary structure prediction appeared. Over the last 10 years a number of prediction methods for 3D structures have been developed, first based on bioinformatics and data-mining, and more recently based on a coarse-grained physical representation of the systems. In this review we are going to present the challenges of RNA structure prediction and the main ideas behind bioinformatic approaches and physics-based approaches. We will focus on the description of the more recent physics-based phenomenological models and on how they are built to include the specificity of the interactions of RNA bases, whose role is critical in folding. Through examples from different models, we will point out the strengths of physics-based approaches, which are able not only to predict equilibrium structures, but also to investigate dynamical and thermodynamical behavior, and the open challenges to include more key interactions ruling RNA folding. PMID:25993396

  7. Folded waveguide coupler

    DOEpatents

    Owens, Thomas L.

    1988-03-01

    A resonant cavity waveguide coupler for ICRH of a magnetically confined plasma. The coupler consists of a series of inter-leaved metallic vanes disposed withn an enclosure analogous to a very wide, simple rectangular waveguide that has been "folded" several times. At the mouth of the coupler, a polarizing plate is provided which has coupling apertures aligned with selected folds of the waveguide through which rf waves are launched with magnetic fields of the waves aligned in parallel with the magnetic fields confining the plasma being heated to provide coupling to the fast magnetosonic wave within the plasma in the frequency usage of from about 50-200 mHz. A shorting plate terminates the back of the cavity at a distance approximately equal to one-half the guide wavelength from the mouth of the coupler to ensure that the electric field of the waves launched through the polarizing plate apertures are small while the magnetic field is near a maximum. Power is fed into the coupler folded cavity by means of an input coaxial line feed arrangement at a point which provides an impedance match between the cavity and the coaxial input line.

  8. Structure and mechanism of a bacterial haloalcohol dehalogenase: a new variation of the short-chain dehydrogenase/reductase fold without an NAD(P)H binding site

    PubMed Central

    de Jong, R.M.; Tiesinga, J.J.W.; Rozeboom, H.J.; Kalk, K.H.; Tang, L.; Janssen, D.B.; Dijkstra, B.W.

    2003-01-01

    Haloalcohol dehalogenases are bacterial enzymes that catalyze the cofactor-independent dehalogenation of vicinal haloalcohols such as the genotoxic environmental pollutant 1,3-dichloro-2-propanol, thereby producing an epoxide, a chloride ion and a proton. Here we present X-ray structures of the haloalcohol dehalogenase HheC from Agrobacterium radiobacter AD1, and complexes of the enzyme with an epoxide product and chloride ion, and with a bound haloalcohol substrate mimic. These structures support a catalytic mechanism in which Tyr145 of a Ser-Tyr-Arg catalytic triad deprotonates the haloalcohol hydroxyl function to generate an intramolecular nucleophile that substitutes the vicinal halogen. Haloalcohol dehalogenases are related to the widespread family of NAD(P)H-dependent short-chain dehydrogenases/reductases (SDR family), which use a similar Ser-Tyr-Lys/Arg catalytic triad to catalyze reductive or oxidative conversions of various secondary alcohols and ketones. Our results reveal the first structural details of an SDR-related enzyme that catalyzes a substitutive dehalogenation reaction rather than a redox reaction, in which a halide-binding site is found at the location of the NAD(P)H binding site. Structure-based sequence analysis reveals that the various haloalcohol dehalogenases have likely originated from at least two different NAD-binding SDR precursors. PMID:14517233

  9. Evolution of the arginase fold and functional diversity

    PubMed Central

    Dowling, Daniel P.; Costanzo, Luigi Di; Gennadios, Heather A.; Christianson, David W.

    2009-01-01

    The large number of protein structures deposited in the Protein Data Bank allows for the identification of novel structural superfamilies based on conservation of fold in addition to conservation of amino acid sequence. Since sequence diverges more rapidly than fold in protein evolution, proteins with little or no significant sequence identity are occasionally observed to adopt similar folds, thereby reflecting unanticipated evolutionary relationships. Here, we review the unique α/β fold first observed in the manganese metalloenzyme rat liver arginase, consisting of a parallel 8 stranded β-sheet surrounded by several helices, and its evolutionary relationship with the zinc-requiring and/or iron-requiring histone deacetylases and acetylpolyamine amidohydrolases. Structural comparisons reveal key features of the core α/β fold that contribute to the divergent metal ion specificity and stoichiometry required for the chemical and biological functions of these enzymes. PMID:18360740

  10. Kinematics of constant arc length folding for different fold shapes

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Ghassemi, Mohammad R.; Schmalholz, Stefan M.; Ghassemi, Ali R.

    2010-06-01

    Basic mathematical functions are applied for the two-dimensional geometrical and kinematical analysis of different fold shapes. Relationships between different fold parameters are established and related to the bulk shortening taking place during folding under upper crustal conditions. The bulk shortening taking place during constant arc length folding is mathematically related to the bulk shortening during homogenous pure shear using a particular aspect ratio, which is for folding the ratio of amplitude to half wavelength and for pure shear the ratio of vertical to horizontal length of the deformed, initially square body. The evolution of the fold aspect ratio with bulk shortening is similar for a wide range of fold shapes and indicates that the fold aspect ratio allows a good estimate of the bulk shortening. The change of the geometry of individual layers across a multilayer sequence in disharmonic folding indicates a specific kinematics of multilayer folding, referred to here as "wrap folding", which does not require significant flexural slip nor flexural flow. The kinematic analysis indicates that there is a critical value for constant arc length folding between shortening values of 30-40% (depending on the fold geometry). For shortening values smaller than the critical value limb rotation and fold amplitude growth are dominating. For shortening larger than this value, faulting, boudinage and foliation development are likely the dominating deformation process during continued shortening. The kinematical analysis of constant arc length folding can be used for estimating the bulk shortening taking place during multilayer folding which is an important component of the deformation of crustal rocks during the early history of shortening. The bulk shortening is estimated for a natural, multilayer detachment fold and the shortening estimates based on the kinematic analysis are compared and supported by numerical finite element simulations of multilayer detachment

  11. Peptide folding simulations.

    PubMed

    Gnanakaran, S; Nymeyer, Hugh; Portman, John; Sanbonmatsu, Kevin Y; García, Angel E

    2003-04-01

    Developments in the design of small peptides that mimic proteins in complexity, recent advances in nanosecond time-resolved spectroscopy methods to study peptides and the development of modern, highly parallel simulation algorithms have come together to give us a detailed picture of peptide folding dynamics. Two newly implemented simulation techniques, parallel replica dynamics and replica exchange molecular dynamics, can now describe directly from simulations the kinetics and thermodynamics of peptide formation, respectively. Given these developments, the simulation community now has the tools to verify and validate simulation protocols and models (forcefields). PMID:12727509

  12. Folding of non-Euclidean curved shells

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Bende, Nakul; Evans, Arthur; Innes-Gold, Sarah; Marin, Luis; Cohen, Itai; Santangelo, Christian; Hayward, Ryan

    2015-03-01

    Origami-based folding of 2D sheets has been of recent interest for a variety of applications ranging from deployable structures to self-folding robots. Though folding of planar sheets follows well-established principles, folding of curved shells involves an added level of complexity due to the inherent influence of curvature on mechanics. In this study, we use principles from differential geometry and thin shell mechanics to establish fundamental rules that govern folding of prototypical creased shells. In particular, we show how the normal curvature of a crease line controls whether the deformation is smooth or discontinuous, and investigate the influence of shell thickness and boundary conditions. We show that snap-folding of shells provides a route to rapid actuation on time-scales dictated by the speed of sound. The simple geometric design principles developed can be applied at any length-scale, offering potential for bio-inspired soft actuators for tunable optics, microfluidics, and robotics. This work was funded by the National Science Foundation through EFRI ODISSEI-1240441 with additional support to S.I.-G. through the UMass MRSEC DMR-0820506 REU program.

  13. Folding funnels, binding funnels, and protein function.

    PubMed Central

    Tsai, C. J.; Kumar, S.; Ma, B.; Nussinov, R.

    1999-01-01

    Folding funnels have been the focus of considerable attention during the last few years. These have mostly been discussed in the general context of the theory of protein folding. Here we extend the utility of the concept of folding funnels, relating them to biological mechanisms and function. In particular, here we describe the shape of the funnels in light of protein synthesis and folding; flexibility, conformational diversity, and binding mechanisms; and the associated binding funnels, illustrating the multiple routes and the range of complexed conformers. Specifically, the walls of the folding funnels, their crevices, and bumps are related to the complexity of protein folding, and hence to sequential vs. nonsequential folding. Whereas the former is more frequently observed in eukaryotic proteins, where the rate of protein synthesis is slower, the latter is more frequent in prokaryotes, with faster translation rates. The bottoms of the funnels reflect the extent of the flexibility of the proteins. Rugged floors imply a range of conformational isomers, which may be close on the energy landscape. Rather than undergoing an induced fit binding mechanism, the conformational ensembles around the rugged bottoms argue that the conformers, which are most complementary to the ligand, will bind to it with the equilibrium shifting in their favor. Furthermore, depending on the extent of the ruggedness, or of the smoothness with only a few minima, we may infer nonspecific, broad range vs. specific binding. In particular, folding and binding are similar processes, with similar underlying principles. Hence, the shape of the folding funnel of the monomer enables making reasonable guesses regarding the shape of the corresponding binding funnel. Proteins having a broad range of binding, such as proteolytic enzymes or relatively nonspecific endonucleases, may be expected to have not only rugged floors in their folding funnels, but their binding funnels will also behave similarly

  14. Self-folding miniature elastic electric devices

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Miyashita, Shuhei; Meeker, Laura; Tolley, Michael T.; Wood, Robert J.; Rus, Daniela

    2014-09-01

    Printing functional materials represents a considerable impact on the access to manufacturing technology. In this paper we present a methodology and validation of print-and-self-fold miniature electric devices. Polyvinyl chloride laminated sheets based on metalized polyester film show reliable self-folding processes under a heat application, and it configures 3D electric devices. We exemplify this technique by fabricating fundamental electric devices, namely a resistor, capacitor, and inductor. Namely, we show the development of a self-folded stretchable resistor, variable resistor, capacitive strain sensor, and an actuation mechanism consisting of a folded contractible solenoid coil. Because of their pre-defined kinematic design, these devices feature elasticity, making them suitable as sensors and actuators in flexible circuits. Finally, an RLC circuit obtained from the integration of developed devices is demonstrated, in which the coil based actuator is controlled by reading a capacitive strain sensor.

  15. Statistical properties of a folded elastic rod

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Bayart, Elsa; Deboeuf, Stéphanie; Boué, Laurent; Corson, Francis; Boudaoud, Arezki; Adda-Bedia, Mokhtar

    2010-03-01

    A large variety of elastic structures naturally seem to be confined into environments too small to accommodate them; the geometry of folded structures span a wide range of length-scales. The elastic properties of these confined systems are further constrained by self-avoidance as well as by the dimensionality of both structures and container. To mimic crumpled paper, we devised an experimental setup to study the packing of a dimensional elastic object in 2D geometries: an elastic rod is folded at the center of a circular Hele-Shaw cell by a centripetal force. The initial configuration of the rod and the acceleration of the rotating disk allow to span different final folded configurations while the final rotation speed controls the packing intensity. Using image analysis we measure geometrical and mechanical properties of the folded configurations, focusing on length, curvature and energy distributions.

  16. Cotranslational folding of deeply knotted proteins

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Chwastyk, Mateusz; Cieplak, Marek

    2015-09-01

    Proper folding of deeply knotted proteins has a very low success rate even in structure-based models which favor formation of the native contacts but have no topological bias. By employing a structure-based model, we demonstrate that cotranslational folding on a model ribosome may enhance the odds to form trefoil knots for protein YibK without any need to introduce any non-native contacts. The ribosome is represented by a repulsive wall that keeps elongating the protein. On-ribosome folding proceeds through a a slipknot conformation. We elucidate the mechanics and energetics of its formation. We show that the knotting probability in on-ribosome folding is a function of temperature and that there is an optimal temperature for the process. Our model often leads to the establishment of the native contacts without formation of the knot.

  17. Cotranslational folding of deeply knotted proteins.

    PubMed

    Chwastyk, Mateusz; Cieplak, Marek

    2015-09-01

    Proper folding of deeply knotted proteins has a very low success rate even in structure-based models which favor formation of the native contacts but have no topological bias. By employing a structure-based model, we demonstrate that cotranslational folding on a model ribosome may enhance the odds to form trefoil knots for protein YibK without any need to introduce any non-native contacts. The ribosome is represented by a repulsive wall that keeps elongating the protein. On-ribosome folding proceeds through a a slipknot conformation. We elucidate the mechanics and energetics of its formation. We show that the knotting probability in on-ribosome folding is a function of temperature and that there is an optimal temperature for the process. Our model often leads to the establishment of the native contacts without formation of the knot. PMID:26292194

  18. Folds on Europa

    NASA Technical Reports Server (NTRS)

    2000-01-01

    This image, acquired by NASA's Galileo spacecraft on September 26, 1998, shows features on the surface of Jupiter's moon Europa that a scientific report published today interprets as signs of compressive folding.

    The imaged area is in the Astypalaea Linea region of Europa's southern hemisphere, seen with low-angle sunshine coming from the upper right. North is toward the top.

    Astypalaea Linea is the smooth, gray area that stretches from north to south across the image mosaic. It is thought to have formed by a combination of pulling apart and sliding of the icy surface. The telltale fold features are within the smoother portions of the surface between the more dominant ridges, which are attributed to upwelling of material through surface ice. In the smooth areas, the surface has gentle swells and dips, which show most clearly in the version on the right, processed to accentuate broader-scale shapes. For example, a dip about 15 kilometers (about 10 miles) wide cuts diagonally across the northern half of the largest smooth area, and a rise runs parallel to that in the southern half of the smooth area. closeup detail

    Louise M. Prockter, at Johns Hopkins University, and Robert T. Pappalardo, at Brown University, report in the journal Science today that those rises, or anticlines, and dips, or synclines, appear to be the result of compression causing the crust to fold.

    Additional evidence comes from smaller features more visible in the version on the left, covering the same area. At the crest of the gentle rise in the largest smooth area are small fractures that could be caused by the stretching stress of bending the surface layer upwards. Similarly, at the bottom of the adjacent dip are small, wrinkle-like ridges that could be caused by stress from bending the surface layer downwards.

    The Jet Propulsion Laboratory, Pasadena, Calif., manages the Galileo mission for NASA's Office of Space Science, Washington, D.C. JPL is a division of the California

  19. The crystal structure of the DNA-binding domain of vIRF-1 from the oncogenic KSHV reveals a conserved fold for DNA binding and reinforces its role as a transcription factor

    PubMed Central

    Hew, Kelly; Venkatachalam, Rajakannan; Nasertorabi, Fariborz; Lim, Bee Ting; Cornvik, Tobias; Nordlund, Pär

    2013-01-01

    Kaposi’s sarcoma-associated herpesvirus encodes four viral homologues to cellular interferon regulatory factors (IRFs), where the most studied is vIRF-1. Even though vIRF-1 shows sequence homology to the N-terminal DNA-binding domain (DBD) of human IRFs, a specific role for this domain in vIRF-1’s function has remained uncertain. To provide insights into the function of the vIRF-1 DBD, we have determined the crystal structure of it in complex with DNA and in its apo-form. Using a thermal stability shift assay (TSSA), we show that the vIRF-1 DBD binds DNA, whereas full-length vIRF-1 does not, suggesting a cis-acting regulatory mechanism in similarity to human IRFs. The complex structure of vIRF-1 DBD reveals interactions with the DNA backbone and the positioning of two arginines for specific recognition in the major grove. A superimposition with human IRF-3 reveals a similar positioning of the two specificity-determining arginines, and additional TSSAs indicate binding of vIRF-1 to an IRF-3 operator consensus sequence. The results from this study, therefore, provide support that vIRF-1 has evolved to bind DNA and plays a role in DNA binding in the context of transcriptional regulation and might act on some of the many operator sequences controlled by human IRF-3. PMID:23435230

  20. Non-cylindrical fold growth in the Zagros fold and thrust belt (Kurdistan, NE-Iraq)

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Bartl, Nikolaus; Bretis, Bernhard; Grasemann, Bernhard; Lockhart, Duncan

    2010-05-01

    The Zagros mountains extends over 1800 km from Kurdistan in N-Iraq to the Strait of Hormuz in Iran and is one of the world most promising regions for the future hydrocarbon exploration. The Zagros Mountains started to form as a result of the collision between the Eurasian and Arabian Plates, whose convergence began in the Late Cretaceous as part of the Alpine-Himalayan orogenic system. Geodetic and seismological data document that both plates are still converging and that the fold and thrust belt of the Zagros is actively growing. Extensive hydrocarbon exploration mainly focuses on the antiforms of this fold and thrust belt and therefore the growth history of the folds is of great importance. This work investigates by means of structural field work and quantitative geomorphological techniques the progressive fold growth of the Permam, Bana Bawi- and Safeen- Anticlines located in the NE of the city of Erbil in the Kurdistan region of Northern Iraq. This part of the Zagros fold and thrust belt belongs to the so-called Simply Folded Belt, which is dominated by gentle to open folding. Faults or fault related folds have only minor importance. The mechanical anisotropy of the formations consisting of a succession of relatively competent (massive dolomite and limestone) and incompetent (claystone and siltstone) sediments essentially controls the deformation pattern with open to gentle parallel folding of the competent layers and flexural flow folding of the incompetent layers. The characteristic wavelength of the fold trains is around 10 km. Due to faster erosion of the softer rock layers in the folded sequence, the more competent lithologies form sharp ridges with steeply sloping sides along the eroded flanks of the anticlines. Using an ASTER digital elevation model in combination with geological field data we quantified 250 drainage basins along the different limbs of the subcylindrical Permam, Bana Bawi- and Safeen- Anticlines. Geomorphological indices of the drainage

  1. Mechanistic aspects of sodium-binding sites in LeuT-like fold symporters.

    PubMed

    Perez, Camilo; Ziegler, Christine

    2013-05-01

    Secondary active transporters are of paramount biological impact in all living cells, facilitating the movement of many different substrates across the membrane against a concentration gradient. The uphill transport of one substrate is coupled to the downhill transport of another and driven by the electrochemical gradient. In the last decade, an increasing number of atomic structures of secondary transporters have been reported, confirming a very fundamental mechanistic concept known as the alternating-access cycle. The wealth of structures of transporters sharing the so-called LeuT-like fold that is characterized by two five-transmembrane-helix repeats sharing a 2-fold inverted pseudo symmetry has raised big hopes to finally describe alternating access on a molecular level. Although comparing the individual transporter states of different LeuT-like fold transporters revealed striking similarities, the coupling process, which represents the heart of secondary transport, is far from being understood. Here, we review the structural, functional, and biophysical validation of sodium-binding sites in four different LeuT-like fold transporters. The conservation of sodium sites is discussed in light of their role as key elements connecting symmetry-related structural domains, which are involved in substrate translocation. Moreover, we highlight their crucial roles in conformational changes of LeuT-like fold transporters and their implication on a unifying mechanism in secondary transport. PMID:23362203

  2. The outcome of control groups in clinical trials of conservative treatments for chronic mechanical neck pain: a systematic review

    PubMed Central

    Vernon, Howard; Humphreys, B Kim; Hagino, Carol

    2006-01-01

    Background Chronic neck pain is highly prevalent in Western societies, with about 15% of females and 10% of males suffering with it at any time. The course of untreated chronic neck pain patients in clinical trials has not been well-defined and the placebo effect has not been clarified. Methods A systematic review of RCT's of conservative treatments for chronic mechanical neck pain was conducted. Studies were excluded if they did not include a control group, if they involved subjects with whiplash injuries, a predominance of headache or arm pain associated with chronic neck pain and if only one treatment was reported. Only studies scoring 3–5 out of 5 on the Jadad Scale for quality were included in the final analysis. Data on change in pain scores of subjects in both placebo (PL) as well as no-treatment (NT) control groups were analyzed. Mean changes in pain scores as well as effect sizes were calculated, summarized and compared between these groups. Results Twenty (20) studies, 5 in the NT group and 15 in the PL group, with outcome intervals ranging from 1–52 weeks were included in the final analysis. The mean [95% CI] effect size of change in pain ratings in the no-treatment control studies at outcome points up to 10 weeks was 0.18 [-0.05, 0.41] and for outcomes from 12–52 weeks it was 0.4 [0.12, 0.68]. In the placebo control groups it was 0.50 [0.10, 0.90] at up to 10 weeks and 0.33. [-1.97, 2.66] at 12–24 weeks. None of the comparisons between the no-treatment and placebo groups were statistically significant. Conclusion It appears that the changes in pain scores in subjects with chronic neck pain not due to whiplash who are enrolled in no-treatment and placebo control groups were similarly small and not significantly different. As well, they do not appear to increase over longer-term follow-up. PMID:16848905

  3. Molecular Recognition by Templated Folding of an Intrinsically Disordered Protein

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Toto, Angelo; Camilloni, Carlo; Giri, Rajanish; Brunori, Maurizio; Vendruscolo, Michele; Gianni, Stefano

    2016-02-01

    Intrinsically disordered proteins often become structured upon interacting with their partners. The mechanism of this ‘folding upon binding’ process, however, has not been fully characterised yet. Here we present a study of the folding of the intrinsically disordered transactivation domain of c-Myb (c-Myb) upon binding its partner KIX. By determining the structure of the folding transition state for the binding of wild-type and three mutational variants of KIX, we found a remarkable plasticity of the folding pathway of c-Myb. To explain this phenomenon, we show that the folding of c-Myb is templated by the structure of KIX. This adaptive folding behaviour, which occurs by heterogeneous nucleation, differs from the robust homogeneous nucleation typically observed for globular proteins. We suggest that this templated folding mechanism may enable intrinsically disordered proteins to achieve specific and reliable binding with multiple partners while avoiding aberrant interactions.

  4. How the genome folds

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Lieberman Aiden, Erez

    2012-02-01

    I describe Hi-C, a novel technology for probing the three-dimensional architecture of whole genomes by coupling proximity-based ligation with massively parallel sequencing. Working with collaborators at the Broad Institute and UMass Medical School, we used Hi-C to construct spatial proximity maps of the human genome at a resolution of 1Mb. These maps confirm the presence of chromosome territories and the spatial proximity of small, gene-rich chromosomes. We identified an additional level of genome organization that is characterized by the spatial segregation of open and closed chromatin to form two genome-wide compartments. At the megabase scale, the chromatin conformation is consistent with a fractal globule, a knot-free conformation that enables maximally dense packing while preserving the ability to easily fold and unfold any genomic locus. The fractal globule is distinct from the more commonly used globular equilibrium model. Our results demonstrate the power of Hi-C to map the dynamic conformations of whole genomes.

  5. Protein folding in the ER.

    SciTech Connect

    Stevens, F. J.; Argon, Y.; Biosciences Division; Univ. of Chicago

    1999-10-01

    The endoplasmic reticulum (ER) is a major protein folding compartment for secreted, plasma membrane and organelle proteins. Each of these newly-synthesized polypeptides folds in a deterministic process, affected by the unique conditions that exist in the ER. An understanding of protein folding in the ER is a fundamental biomolecular challenge at two levels. The first level addresses how the amino acid sequence programs that polypeptide to efficiently arrive at a particular fold out of a multitude of alternatives, and how different sequences obtain similar folds. At the second level are the issues introduced by folding not in the cytosol, but in the ER, including the risk of aggregation in a molecularly crowded environment, accommodation of post-translational modifications and the compatibility with subsequent intracellular trafficking. This review discusses both the physicochemical and cell biological constraints of folding, which are the challenges that the ER molecular chaperones help overcome.

  6. Evolutionary optimization of protein folding.

    PubMed

    Debès, Cédric; Wang, Minglei; Caetano-Anollés, Gustavo; Gräter, Frauke

    2013-01-01

    Nature has shaped the make up of proteins since their appearance, [Formula: see text]3.8 billion years ago. However, the fundamental drivers of structural change responsible for the extraordinary diversity of proteins have yet to be elucidated. Here we explore if protein evolution affects folding speed. We estimated folding times for the present-day catalog of protein domains directly from their size-modified contact order. These values were mapped onto an evolutionary timeline of domain appearance derived from a phylogenomic analysis of protein domains in 989 fully-sequenced genomes. Our results show a clear overall increase of folding speed during evolution, with known ultra-fast downhill folders appearing rather late in the timeline. Remarkably, folding optimization depends on secondary structure. While alpha-folds showed a tendency to fold faster throughout evolution, beta-folds exhibited a trend of folding time increase during the last [Formula: see text]1.5 billion years that began during the "big bang" of domain combinations. As a consequence, these domain structures are on average slow folders today. Our results suggest that fast and efficient folding of domains shaped the universe of protein structure. This finding supports the hypothesis that optimization of the kinetic and thermodynamic accessibility of the native fold reduces protein aggregation propensities that hamper cellular functions. PMID:23341762

  7. Computational analysis of hydrogenated graphyne folding

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Lenear, Christopher; Becton, Matthew; Wang, Xianqiao

    2016-02-01

    This letter employs molecular mechanics simulations to analyze the geometric changes of foreign-atom-doped graphyne. Simulation results show that higher the density of dopant and the greater area covered by the dopant correlates to a greater folding angle of the graphyne sheet. Compared to graphene, graphyne folding could prove to be more effective for various nanodevices based on its unique band gap, especially when doped, and its tunable interactions with and absorption of foreign molecules. Therefore, our findings may offer unique perspectives into the development of novel graphyne-based nanodevices and stimulate the community's research interest in graphene-related origami.

  8. Folding and faulting of an elastic continuum

    PubMed Central

    Gourgiotis, Panos A.

    2016-01-01

    Folding is a process in which bending is localized at sharp edges separated by almost undeformed elements. This process is rarely encountered in Nature, although some exceptions can be found in unusual layered rock formations (called ‘chevrons’) and seashell patterns (for instance Lopha cristagalli). In mechanics, the bending of a three-dimensional elastic solid is common (for example, in bulk wave propagation), but folding is usually not achieved. In this article, the route leading to folding is shown for an elastic solid obeying the couple-stress theory with an extreme anisotropy. This result is obtained with a perturbation technique, which involves the derivation of new two-dimensional Green's functions for applied concentrated force and moment. While the former perturbation reveals folding, the latter shows that a material in an extreme anisotropic state is also prone to a faulting instability, in which a displacement step of finite size emerges. Another failure mechanism, namely the formation of dilation/compaction bands, is also highlighted. Finally, a geophysical application to the mechanics of chevron formation shows how the proposed approach may explain the formation of natural structures. PMID:27118925

  9. Diversified Structural Basis of a Conserved Molecular Mechanism for pH-Dependent Dimerization in Spider Silk N-Terminal Domains.

    PubMed

    Otikovs, Martins; Chen, Gefei; Nordling, Kerstin; Landreh, Michael; Meng, Qing; Jörnvall, Hans; Kronqvist, Nina; Rising, Anna; Johansson, Jan; Jaudzems, Kristaps

    2015-08-17

    Conversion of spider silk proteins from soluble dope to insoluble fibers involves pH-dependent dimerization of the N-terminal domain (NT). This conversion is tightly regulated to prevent premature precipitation and enable rapid silk formation at the end of the duct. Three glutamic acid residues that mediate this process in the NT from Euprosthenops australis major ampullate spidroin 1 are well conserved among spidroins. However, NTs of minor ampullate spidroins from several species, including Araneus ventricosus ((Av)MiSp NT), lack one of the glutamic acids. Here we investigate the pH-dependent structural changes of (Av)MiSp NT, revealing that it uses the same mechanism but involves a non-conserved glutamic acid residue instead. Homology modeling of the structures of other MiSp NTs suggests that these harbor different compensatory residues. This indicates that, despite sequence variations, the molecular mechanism underlying pH-dependent dimerization of NT is conserved among different silk types. PMID:26033527

  10. Generation of buckle folds in Naga fold thrust belt, north-east India

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Saha, B.; Dietl, C.

    2009-04-01

    Naga fold thrust belt (NFTB), India, formed as a result of northward migration of the Indian plate initiated in Eocene and its subsequent collision with the Burmese plate during Oligocene. The NW-SE oriented compression generated a spectrum of structures; among them, we intend to focus on the folds- varying from gentle to tight asymmetric in geometry. Large recumbent folds are often associated with thrusting. Buckle folds forming under shallow crustal conditions are frequently reported from NFTB. Buckle folding occurs mainly within sandstones with intercalated shale layers which are in the study area typical for the Barail, Surma and Tipam Groups. We have tried to explain the controlling factors behind the variation of the buckle fold shapes and their varying wavelengths throughout the fold thrust belt with the aid of analogue (sand box) modelling. It is undoubted that competence contrast along with the layer parallel compressive stress are the major influencing factors in generation of buckle folds. Schmalholz and Podladchikov (1999) and Jeng et al. (2002) have shown that when low strain rate and low temperature are applicable, not only the viscosity contrast, but also the elasticity contrast govern the geometry of the developing buckle folds. Rocks deforming under high temperature and high pressure deform in pure viscous manner, whereas, rocks undergoing less confining stress and less temperature, are subjected to pure elastic deformation. However, they are the end members, and most of the deformations are a combination of these two end members, i.e. of viscoelastic nature. Our models are made up of sieved sand (0.5 mm grain size) and mica layers (1-5 mm) This interlayering imparts a mechanical anisotropy in the model. Mica is not a pure viscous material, rather it displays more elastic behaviour. The mica layers in the model produce bedding parallel slip during shortening through internal reorganization of the individual mica crystals leading to the thickening

  11. OB-fold domains: a snapshot of the evolution of sequence, structure and function.

    PubMed

    Arcus, Vickery

    2002-12-01

    The OB-fold is found in all three kingdoms and is well represented in both sequence and structural databases. The OB-fold is a five-stranded closed beta barrel and the majority of OB-fold proteins use the same face for ligand binding or as an active site. Different OB-fold proteins use this 'fold-related binding face' to, variously, bind oligosaccharides, oligonucleotides, proteins, metal ions and catalytic substrates. Recently, a number of new structures with OB-folds have been reported that augment the variation seen for this set of proteins whilst conserving the characteristic fold and binding face. The conservation of fold and a functional binding face amongst many structures provides a model for investigating the evolutionary trajectory of sequence, structure and function. PMID:12504685

  12. DELAY OF GERMINATION 1 mediates a conserved coat-dormancy mechanism for the temperature- and gibberellin-dependent control of seed germination

    PubMed Central

    Graeber, Kai; Linkies, Ada; Steinbrecher, Tina; Mummenhoff, Klaus; Tarkowská, Danuše; Turečková, Veronika; Ignatz, Michael; Sperber, Katja; Voegele, Antje; de Jong, Hans; Urbanová, Terezie; Strnad, Miroslav; Leubner-Metzger, Gerhard

    2014-01-01

    Seed germination is an important life-cycle transition because it determines subsequent plant survival and reproductive success. To detect optimal spatiotemporal conditions for germination, seeds act as sophisticated environmental sensors integrating information such as ambient temperature. Here we show that the DELAY OF GERMINATION 1 (DOG1) gene, known for providing dormancy adaptation to distinct environments, determines the optimal temperature for seed germination. By reciprocal gene-swapping experiments between Brassicaceae species we show that the DOG1-mediated dormancy mechanism is conserved. Biomechanical analyses show that this mechanism regulates the material properties of the endosperm, a seed tissue layer acting as germination barrier to control coat dormancy. We found that DOG1 inhibits the expression of gibberellin (GA)-regulated genes encoding cell-wall remodeling proteins in a temperature-dependent manner. Furthermore we demonstrate that DOG1 causes temperature-dependent alterations in the seed GA metabolism. These alterations in hormone metabolism are brought about by the temperature-dependent differential expression of genes encoding key enzymes of the GA biosynthetic pathway. These effects of DOG1 lead to a temperature-dependent control of endosperm weakening and determine the optimal temperature for germination. The conserved DOG1-mediated coat-dormancy mechanism provides a highly adaptable temperature-sensing mechanism to control the timing of germination. PMID:25114251

  13. The Conservation of Structure and Mechanism of Catalytic Action in a Family of Thiamin Pyrophosphate (TPP)-dependent Enzymes

    NASA Technical Reports Server (NTRS)

    Dominiak, P.; Ciszak, Ewa

    2004-01-01

    Thiamin pyrophosphate (TPP)-dependent enzymes are a divergent family of TPP and metal ion binding proteins that perform a wide range of functions with the common decarboxylation steps of a -(O=)C-C(OH)- fragment of alpha-ketoacids and alpha- hydroxyaldehydes. To determine how structure and catalytic action are conserved in the context of large sequence differences existing within this family of enzymes, we have carried out an analysis of TPP-dependent enzymes of known structures. The common structure of TPP-dependent enzymes is formed at the interface of four alpha/beta domains from at least two subunits, which provide for two metal and TPP-binding sites. Residues around these catalytic sites are conserved for functional purpose, while those further away from TPP are conserved for structural reasons. Together they provide a network of contacts required for flip-flop catalytic action within TPP-dependent enzymes. Thus our analysis defines a TPP-action motif that is proposed for annotating TPP-dependent enzymes for advancing functional proteomics.

  14. COS NUV MAMA Fold Distribution

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Wheeler, Thomas

    2010-09-01

    The performance of the MAMA microchannel plate can be monitored using a MAMA fold analysis procedure. The fold analysis provides a measurement of the distribution of charge cloud sizes incident upon the anode giving some measure of changes in the pulse-height distribution of the MCP and, therefore, MCP gain. This proposal executes the same steps as the COS MAMA Fold Analysis {11891} during Cycle 17.

  15. COS NUV MAMA Fold Distribution

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Wheeler, Thomas

    2012-10-01

    The performance of the MAMA microchannel plate can be monitored using a MAMA fold analysis procedure. The fold analysis provides a measurement of the distribution of charge cloud sizes incident upon the anode giving some measure of changes in the pulse-height distribution of the MCP and, therefore, MCP gain. This proposal executes the same steps as the COS MAMA Fold Analysis {12723} during Cycle 19.

  16. Compact intermediates in RNA folding

    SciTech Connect

    Woodson, S.A.

    2011-12-14

    Large noncoding RNAs fold into their biologically functional structures via compact yet disordered intermediates, which couple the stable secondary structure of the RNA with the emerging tertiary fold. The specificity of the collapse transition, which coincides with the assembly of helical domains, depends on RNA sequence and counterions. It determines the specificity of the folding pathways and the magnitude of the free energy barriers to the ensuing search for the native conformation. By coupling helix assembly with nascent tertiary interactions, compact folding intermediates in RNA also play a crucial role in ligand binding and RNA-protein recognition.

  17. Paradoxical Vocal Fold Movement (PVFM)

    MedlinePlus

    ... Careers Certification Publications Events Advocacy Continuing Education Practice Management Research Home / Information for the Public / Speech, Language and Swallowing / Disorders and Diseases Paradoxical Vocal Fold ...

  18. Folding superfunnel to describe cooperative folding of interacting proteins.

    PubMed

    Smeller, László

    2016-07-01

    This paper proposes a generalization of the well-known folding funnel concept of proteins. In the funnel model the polypeptide chain is treated as an individual object not interacting with other proteins. Since biological systems are considerably crowded, protein-protein interaction is a fundamental feature during the life cycle of proteins. The folding superfunnel proposed here describes the folding process of interacting proteins in various situations. The first example discussed is the folding of the freshly synthesized protein with the aid of chaperones. Another important aspect of protein-protein interactions is the folding of the recently characterized intrinsically disordered proteins, where binding to target proteins plays a crucial role in the completion of the folding process. The third scenario where the folding superfunnel is used is the formation of aggregates from destabilized proteins, which is an important factor in case of several conformational diseases. The folding superfunnel constructed here with the minimal assumption about the interaction potential explains all three cases mentioned above. Proteins 2016; 84:1009-1016. © 2016 Wiley Periodicals, Inc. PMID:27090200

  19. Understanding the folding rates and folding nuclei of globular proteins.

    PubMed

    Finkelstein, Alexei V; Ivankov, Dmitry N; Garbuzynskiy, Sergiy O; Galzitskaya, Oxana V

    2007-12-01

    The first part of this paper contains an overview of protein structures, their spontaneous formation ("folding"), and the thermodynamic and kinetic aspects of this phenomenon, as revealed by in vitro experiments. It is stressed that universal features of folding are observed near the point of thermodynamic equilibrium between the native and denatured states of the protein. Here the "two-state" ("denatured state" <--> "native state") transition proceeds without accumulation of metastable intermediates, but includes only the unstable "transition state". This state, which is the most unstable in the folding pathway, and its structured core (a "nucleus") are distinguished by their essential influence on the folding/unfolding kinetics. In the second part of the paper, a theory of protein folding rates and related phenomena is presented. First, it is shown that the protein size determines the range of a protein's folding rates in the vicinity of the point of thermodynamic equilibrium between the native and denatured states of the protein. Then, we present methods for calculating folding and unfolding rates of globular proteins from their sizes, stabilities and either 3D structures or amino acid sequences. Finally, we show that the same theory outlines the location of the protein folding nucleus (i.e., the structured part of the transition state) in reasonable agreement with experimental data. PMID:18220841

  20. Effects of Knots on Protein Folding Properties

    PubMed Central

    Soler, Miguel A.; Faísca, Patrícia F. N.

    2013-01-01

    This work explores the impact of knots, knot depth and motif of the threading terminus in protein folding properties (kinetics, thermodynamics and mechanism) via extensive Monte Carlo simulations of lattice models. A knotted backbone has no effect on protein thermodynamic stability but it may affect key aspects of folding kinetics. In this regard, we found clear evidence for a functional advantage of knots: knots enhance kinetic stability because a knotted protein unfolds at a distinctively slower rate than its unknotted counterpart. However, an increase in knot deepness does not necessarily lead to more effective changes in folding properties. In this regard, a terminus with a non-trivial conformation (e.g. hairpin) can have a more dramatic effect in enhancing kinetic stability than knot depth. Nevertheless, our results suggest that the probability of the denatured ensemble to keep knotted is higher for proteins with deeper knots, indicating that knot depth plays a role in determining the topology of the denatured state. Refolding simulations starting from denatured knotted conformations show that not every knot is able to nucleate folding and further indicate that the formation of the knotting loop is a key event in the folding of knotted trefoils. They also show that there are specific native contacts within the knotted core that are crucial to keep a native knotting loop in denatured conformations which otherwise have no detectable structure. The study of the knotting mechanism reveals that the threading of the knotting loop generally occurs towards late folding in conformations that exhibit a significant degree of structural consolidation. PMID:24023962

  1. Comparative studies of Munc18c and Munc18-1 reveal conserved and divergent mechanisms of Sec1/Munc18 proteins

    PubMed Central

    Yu, Haijia; Rathore, Shailendra S.; Lopez, Jamie A.; Davis, Eric M.; James, David E.; Martin, Jennifer L.; Shen, Jingshi

    2013-01-01

    Sec1/Munc18 (SM) family proteins are essential for every vesicle fusion pathway. The best-characterized SM protein is the synaptic factor Munc18-1, but it remains unclear whether its functions represent conserved mechanisms of SM proteins or specialized activities in neurotransmitter release. To address this question, we dissected Munc18c, a functionally distinct SM protein involved in nonsynaptic exocytic pathways. We discovered that Munc18c binds to the trans-SNARE (soluble N-ethylmaleimide-sensitive factor attachment protein receptor) complex and strongly accelerates the fusion rate. Further analysis suggests that Munc18c recognizes both vesicle-rooted SNARE and target membrane-associated SNAREs, and promotes trans-SNARE zippering at the postdocking stage of the fusion reaction. The stimulation of fusion by Munc18c is specific to its cognate SNARE isoforms. Because Munc18-1 regulates fusion in a similar manner, we conclude that one conserved function of SM proteins is to bind their cognate trans-SNARE complexes and accelerate fusion kinetics. Munc18c also binds syntaxin-4 monomer but does not block target membrane-associated SNARE assembly, in agreement with our observation that six- to eightfold increases in Munc18c expression do not inhibit insulin-stimulated glucose uptake in adipocytes. Thus, the inhibitory “closed” syntaxin binding mode demonstrated for Munc18-1 is not conserved in Munc18c. Unexpectedly, we found that Munc18c recognizes the N-terminal region of the vesicle-rooted SNARE, whereas Munc18-1 requires the C-terminal sequences, suggesting that the architecture of the SNARE/SM complex likely differs across fusion pathways. Together, these comparative studies of two distinct SM proteins reveal conserved as well as divergent mechanisms of SM family proteins in intracellular vesicle fusion. PMID:23918365

  2. Towards a systematic classification of protein folds

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Lindgård, Per-Anker; Bohr, Henrik

    1997-10-01

    A lattice model Hamiltonian is suggested for protein structures that can explain the division into structural fold classes during the folding process. Proteins are described by chains of secondary structure elements, with the hinges in between being the important degrees of freedom. The protein structures are given a unique name, which simultaneously represent a linear string of physical coupling constants describing hinge spin interactions. We have defined a metric and a precise distance measure between the fold classes. An automated procedure is constructed in which any protein structure in the usual protein data base coordinate format can be transformed into the proposed chain representation. Taking into account hydrophobic forces we have found a mechanism for the formation of domains with a unique fold containing predicted magic numbers \\{4,6,9,12,16,18,...\\} of secondary structures and multiples of these domains. It is shown that the same magic numbers are robust and occur as well for packing on other nonclosed packed lattices. We have performed a statistical analysis of available protein structures and found agreement with the predicted preferred abundances of proteins with a predicted magic number of secondary structures. Thermodynamic arguments for the increased abundance and a phase diagram for the folding scenario are given. This includes an intermediate high symmetry phase, the parent structures, between the molten globule and the native states. We have made an exhaustive enumeration of dense lattice animals on a cubic lattice for acceptance number Z=4 and Z=5 up to 36 vertices.

  3. The Folding of a Family of Three-Helix Bundle Proteins: Spectrin R15 Has a Robust Folding Nucleus, Unlike Its Homologous Neighbours☆

    PubMed Central

    Kwa, Lee Gyan; Wensley, Beth G.; Alexander, Crispin G.; Browning, Stuart J.; Lichman, Benjamin R.; Clarke, Jane

    2014-01-01

    Three homologous spectrin domains have remarkably different folding characteristics. We have previously shown that the slow-folding R16 and R17 spectrin domains can be altered to resemble the fast folding R15, in terms of speed of folding (and unfolding), landscape roughness and folding mechanism, simply by substituting five residues in the core. Here we show that, by contrast, R15 cannot be engineered to resemble R16 and R17. It is possible to engineer a slow-folding version of R15, but our analysis shows that this protein neither has a rougher energy landscape nor does change its folding mechanism. Quite remarkably, R15 appears to be a rare example of a protein with a folding nucleus that does not change in position or in size when its folding nucleus is disrupted. Thus, while two members of this protein family are remarkably plastic, the third has apparently a restricted folding landscape. PMID:24373753

  4. Folding of β-barrel membrane proteins in lipid bilayers - Unassisted and assisted folding and insertion.

    PubMed

    Kleinschmidt, Jörg H

    2015-09-01

    In cells, β-barrel membrane proteins are transported in unfolded form to an outer membrane into which they fold and insert. Model systems have been established to investigate the mechanisms of insertion and folding of these versatile proteins into detergent micelles, lipid bilayers and even synthetic amphipathic polymers. In these experiments, insertion into lipid membranes is initiated from unfolded forms that do not display residual β-sheet secondary structure. These studies therefore have allowed the investigation of membrane protein folding and insertion in great detail. Folding of β-barrel membrane proteins into lipid bilayers has been monitored from unfolded forms by dilution of chaotropic denaturants that keep the protein unfolded as well as from unfolded forms present in complexes with molecular chaperones from cells. This review is aimed to provide an overview of the principles and mechanisms observed for the folding of β-barrel transmembrane proteins into lipid bilayers, the importance of lipid-protein interactions and the function of molecular chaperones and folding assistants. This article is part of a Special Issue entitled: Lipid-protein interactions. PMID:25983306

  5. Structural Bridges through Fold Space

    PubMed Central

    Edwards, Hannah; Deane, Charlotte M.

    2015-01-01

    Several protein structure classification schemes exist that partition the protein universe into structural units called folds. Yet these schemes do not discuss how these units sit relative to each other in a global structure space. In this paper we construct networks that describe such global relationships between folds in the form of structural bridges. We generate these networks using four different structural alignment methods across multiple score thresholds. The networks constructed using the different methods remain a similar distance apart regardless of the probability threshold defining a structural bridge. This suggests that at least some structural bridges are method specific and that any attempt to build a picture of structural space should not be reliant on a single structural superposition method. Despite these differences all representations agree on an organisation of fold space into five principal community structures: all-α, all-β sandwiches, all-β barrels, α/β and α + β. We project estimated fold ages onto the networks and find that not only are the pairings of unconnected folds associated with higher age differences than bridged folds, but this difference increases with the number of networks displaying an edge. We also examine different centrality measures for folds within the networks and how these relate to fold age. While these measures interpret the central core of fold space in varied ways they all identify the disposition of ancestral folds to fall within this core and that of the more recently evolved structures to provide the peripheral landscape. These findings suggest that evolutionary information is encoded along these structural bridges. Finally, we identify four highly central pivotal folds representing dominant topological features which act as key attractors within our landscapes. PMID:26372166

  6. Pseudoknots in RNA folding landscapes

    PubMed Central

    Kucharík, Marcel; Hofacker, Ivo L.; Stadler, Peter F.; Qin, Jing

    2016-01-01

    Motivation: The function of an RNA molecule is not only linked to its native structure, which is usually taken to be the ground state of its folding landscape, but also in many cases crucially depends on the details of the folding pathways such as stable folding intermediates or the timing of the folding process itself. To model and understand these processes, it is necessary to go beyond ground state structures. The study of rugged RNA folding landscapes holds the key to answer these questions. Efficient coarse-graining methods are required to reduce the intractably vast energy landscapes into condensed representations such as barrier trees or basin hopping graphs (BHG) that convey an approximate but comprehensive picture of the folding kinetics. So far, exact and heuristic coarse-graining methods have been mostly restricted to the pseudoknot-free secondary structures. Pseudoknots, which are common motifs and have been repeatedly hypothesized to play an important role in guiding folding trajectories, were usually excluded. Results: We generalize the BHG framework to include pseudoknotted RNA structures and systematically study the differences in predicted folding behavior depending on whether pseudoknotted structures are allowed to occur as folding intermediates or not. We observe that RNAs with pseudoknotted ground state structures tend to have more pseudoknotted folding intermediates than RNAs with pseudoknot-free ground state structures. The occurrence and influence of pseudoknotted intermediates on the folding pathway, however, appear to depend very strongly on the individual RNAs so that no general rule can be inferred. Availability and implementation: The algorithms described here are implemented in C++ as standalone programs. Its source code and Supplemental material can be freely downloaded from http://www.tbi.univie.ac.at/bhg.html. Contact: qin@bioinf.uni-leipzig.de Supplementary information: Supplementary data are available at Bioinformatics online. PMID

  7. 3D fold growth rates in transpressional tectonic settings

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Frehner, Marcel

    2015-04-01

    Geological folds are inherently three-dimensional (3D) structures; hence, they also grow in 3D. In this study, fold growth in all three dimensions is quantified numerically using a finite-element algorithm for simulating deformation of Newtonian media in 3D. The presented study is an extension and generalization of the work presented in Frehner (2014), which only considered unidirectional layer-parallel compression. In contrast, the full range from strike slip settings (i.e., simple shear) to unidirectional layer-parallel compression is considered here by varying the convergence angle of the boundary conditions; hence the results are applicable to general transpressional tectonic settings. Only upright symmetrical single-layer fold structures are considered. The horizontal higher-viscous layer exhibits an initial point-like perturbation. Due to the mixed pure- and simple shear boundary conditions a mechanical buckling instability grows from this perturbation in all three dimensions, described by: Fold amplification (vertical growth): Fold amplification describes the growth from a fold shape with low limb-dip angle to a shape with higher limb-dip angle. Fold elongation (growth parallel to fold axis): Fold elongation describes the growth from a dome-shaped (3D) structure to a more cylindrical fold (2D). Sequential fold growth (growth perpendicular to fold axial plane): Sequential fold growth describes the growth of secondary (and further) folds adjacent to the initial isolated fold. The term 'lateral fold growth' is used as an umbrella term for both fold elongation and sequential fold growth. In addition, the orientation of the fold axis is tracked as a function of the convergence angle. Even though the absolute values of all three growth rates are markedly reduced with increasing simple-shear component at the boundaries, the general pattern of the quantified fold growth under the studied general-shear boundary conditions is surprisingly similar to the end

  8. COS NUV MAMA Fold Distribution

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Wheeler, Thomas

    2013-10-01

    The performance of the MAMA microchannel plate can be monitored using a MAMA fold analysis procedure. The fold analysis provides a measurement of the distribution of charge cloud sizes incident upon the anode giving some measure of changes in the pulse-height distribution of the MCP and, therefore, MCP gain. This proposal executes the same steps as Cycle 20 proposal 13128.

  9. Problem Solving through Paper Folding

    ERIC Educational Resources Information Center

    Wares, Arsalan

    2014-01-01

    The purpose of this article is to describe a couple of challenging mathematical problems that involve paper folding. These problem-solving tasks can be used to foster geometric and algebraic thinking among students. The context of paper folding makes some of the abstract mathematical ideas involved relatively concrete. When implemented…

  10. THE DELICATE BALANCE BETWEEN SECRETED PROTEIN FOLDING AND ENDOPLASMIC RETICULUM-ASSOCIATED DEGRADATION IN HUMAN PHYSIOLOGY

    PubMed Central

    Guerriero, Christopher J.; Brodsky, Jeffrey L.

    2014-01-01

    Protein folding is a complex, error-prone process that often results in an irreparable protein by-product. These by-products can be recognized by cellular quality control machineries and targeted for proteasome-dependent degradation. The folding of proteins in the secretory pathway adds another layer to the protein folding “problem,” as the endoplasmic reticulum maintains a unique chemical environment within the cell. In fact, a growing number of diseases are attributed to defects in secretory protein folding, and many of these by-products are targeted for a process known as endoplasmic reticulum-associated degradation (ERAD). Since its discovery, research on the mechanisms underlying the ERAD pathway has provided new insights into how ERAD contributes to human health during both normal and diseases states. Links between ERAD and disease are evidenced from the loss of protein function as a result of degradation, chronic cellular stress when ERAD fails to keep up with misfolded protein production, and the ability of some pathogens to coopt the ERAD pathway. The growing number of ERAD substrates has also illuminated the differences in the machineries used to recognize and degrade a vast array of potential clients for this pathway. Despite all that is known about ERAD, many questions remain, and new paradigms will likely emerge. Clearly, the key to successful disease treatment lies within defining the molecular details of the ERAD pathway and in understanding how this conserved pathway selects and degrades an innumerable cast of substrates. PMID:22535891

  11. Acceleration of protein folding by four orders of magnitude through a single amino acid substitution

    PubMed Central

    Roderer, Daniel J. A.; Schärer, Martin A.; Rubini, Marina; Glockshuber, Rudi

    2015-01-01

    Cis prolyl peptide bonds are conserved structural elements in numerous protein families, although their formation is energetically unfavorable, intrinsically slow and often rate-limiting for folding. Here we investigate the reasons underlying the conservation of the cis proline that is diagnostic for the fold of thioredoxin-like thiol-disulfide oxidoreductases. We show that replacement of the conserved cis proline in thioredoxin by alanine can accelerate spontaneous folding to the native, thermodynamically most stable state by more than four orders of magnitude. However, the resulting trans alanine bond leads to small structural rearrangements around the active site that impair the function of thioredoxin as catalyst of electron transfer reactions by more than 100-fold. Our data provide evidence for the absence of a strong evolutionary pressure to achieve intrinsically fast folding rates, which is most likely a consequence of proline isomerases and molecular chaperones that guarantee high in vivo folding rates and yields. PMID:26121966

  12. Acceleration of protein folding by four orders of magnitude through a single amino acid substitution.

    PubMed

    Roderer, Daniel J A; Schärer, Martin A; Rubini, Marina; Glockshuber, Rudi

    2015-01-01

    Cis prolyl peptide bonds are conserved structural elements in numerous protein families, although their formation is energetically unfavorable, intrinsically slow and often rate-limiting for folding. Here we investigate the reasons underlying the conservation of the cis proline that is diagnostic for the fold of thioredoxin-like thiol-disulfide oxidoreductases. We show that replacement of the conserved cis proline in thioredoxin by alanine can accelerate spontaneous folding to the native, thermodynamically most stable state by more than four orders of magnitude. However, the resulting trans alanine bond leads to small structural rearrangements around the active site that impair the function of thioredoxin as catalyst of electron transfer reactions by more than 100-fold. Our data provide evidence for the absence of a strong evolutionary pressure to achieve intrinsically fast folding rates, which is most likely a consequence of proline isomerases and molecular chaperones that guarantee high in vivo folding rates and yields. PMID:26121966

  13. Structure of the Brd4 ET domain bound to a C-terminal motif from γ-retroviral integrases reveals a conserved mechanism of interaction

    PubMed Central

    Crowe, Brandon L.; Larue, Ross C.; Yuan, Chunhua; Hess, Sonja; Kvaratskhelia, Mamuka; Foster, Mark P.

    2016-01-01

    The bromodomain and extraterminal domain (BET) protein family are promising therapeutic targets for a range of diseases linked to transcriptional activation, cancer, viral latency, and viral integration. Tandem bromodomains selectively tether BET proteins to chromatin by engaging cognate acetylated histone marks, and the extraterminal (ET) domain is the focal point for recruiting a range of cellular and viral proteins. BET proteins guide γ-retroviral integration to transcription start sites and enhancers through bimodal interaction with chromatin and the γ-retroviral integrase (IN). We report the NMR-derived solution structure of the Brd4 ET domain bound to a conserved peptide sequence from the C terminus of murine leukemia virus (MLV) IN. The complex reveals a protein–protein interaction governed by the binding-coupled folding of disordered regions in both interacting partners to form a well-structured intermolecular three-stranded β sheet. In addition, we show that a peptide comprising the ET binding motif (EBM) of MLV IN can disrupt the cognate interaction of Brd4 with NSD3, and that substitutions of Brd4 ET residues essential for binding MLV IN also impair interaction of Brd4 with a number of cellular partners involved in transcriptional regulation and chromatin remodeling. This suggests that γ-retroviruses have evolved the EBM to mimic a cognate interaction motif to achieve effective integration in host chromatin. Collectively, our findings identify key structural features of the ET domain of Brd4 that allow for interactions with both cellular and viral proteins. PMID:26858406

  14. A Computational Study of the Effect of False Vocal Folds on Glottal Flow and Vocal Fold Vibration During Phonation

    PubMed Central

    Zheng, Xudong; Bielamowicz, Steve; Luo, Haoxiang; Mittal, Rajat

    2010-01-01

    The false vocal folds are believed to be components of the acoustic filter that is responsible for shaping the voice. However, the effects of false vocal folds on the vocal fold vibration and the glottal aerodynamic during phonation remain unclear. This effect has implications for computational modeling of phonation as well as for understanding laryngeal pathologies such as glottal incompetence resulting from unilateral vocal fold paralysis. In this study, a high fidelity, two-dimensional computational model, which combines an immersed boundary method for the airflow and a continuum, finite-element method for the vocal folds, is used to examine the effect of the false vocal folds on flow-induced vibration (FIV) of the true vocal folds and the dynamics of the glottal jet. The model is notionally based on a laryngeal CT scan and employs realistic flow conditions and tissue properties. Results show that the false vocal folds potentially have a significant impact on phonation. The false vocal folds reduce the glottal flow impedance and increase the amplitude as well as the mean glottal jet velocity. The false vocal folds also enhance the intensity of the monopole acoustic sources in the glottis. A mechanism for reduction in flow impedance due to the false vocal folds is proposed. PMID:19142730

  15. A computational study of the effect of false vocal folds on glottal flow and vocal fold vibration during phonation.

    PubMed

    Zheng, Xudong; Bielamowicz, Steve; Luo, Haoxiang; Mittal, Rajat

    2009-03-01

    The false vocal folds are believed to be components of the acoustic filter that is responsible for shaping the voice. However, the effects of false vocal folds on the vocal fold vibration and the glottal aerodynamic during phonation remain unclear. This effect has implications for computational modeling of phonation as well as for understanding laryngeal pathologies such as glottal incompetence resulting from unilateral vocal fold paralysis. In this study, a high fidelity, two-dimensional computational model, which combines an immersed boundary method for the airflow and a continuum, finite-element method for the vocal folds, is used to examine the effect of the false vocal folds on flow-induced vibration (FIV) of the true vocal folds and the dynamics of the glottal jet. The model is notionally based on a laryngeal CT scan and employs realistic flow conditions and tissue properties. Results show that the false vocal folds potentially have a significant impact on phonation. The false vocal folds reduce the glottal flow impedance and increase the amplitude as well as the mean glottal jet velocity. The false vocal folds also enhance the intensity of the monopole acoustic sources in the glottis. A mechanism for reduction in flow impedance due to the false vocal folds is proposed. PMID:19142730

  16. Fast events in protein folding

    SciTech Connect

    Woodruff, W.; Callender, R.; Causgrove, T.; Dyer, R.; Williams, S.

    1996-04-01

    The primary objective of this work was to develop a molecular understanding of how proteins achieve their native three-dimensional (folded) structures. This requires the identification and characterization of intermediates in the protein folding process on all relevant timescales, from picoseconds to seconds. The short timescale events in protein folding have been entirely unknown. Prior to this work, state-of-the-art experimental approaches were limited to milliseconds or longer, when much of the folding process is already over. The gap between theory and experiment is enormous: current theoretical and computational methods cannot realistically model folding processes with lifetimes longer than one nanosecond. This unique approach to employ laser pump-probe techniques that combine novel methods of laser flash photolysis with time-resolved vibrational spectroscopic probes of protein transients. In this scheme, a short (picosecond to nanosecond) laser photolysis pulse was used to produce an instantaneous pH or temperature jump, thereby initiating a protein folding or unfolding reaction. Structure-specific, time-resolved vibrational probes were then used to identify and characterize protein folding intermediates.

  17. Molecular and biochemical analysis of rainbow trout LCK suggests a conserved mechanism for T-cell signaling in gnathostomes

    USGS Publications Warehouse

    Laing, K.J.; Dutton, S.; Hansen, J.D.

    2007-01-01

    Two genes were identified in rainbow trout that display high sequence identity to vertebrate Lck. Both of the trout Lck transcripts are associated with lymphoid tissues and were found to be highly expressed in IgM-negative lymphocytes. In vitro analysis of trout lymphocytes indicates that trout Lck mRNA is up-regulated by T-cell mitogens, supporting an evolutionarily conserved function for Lck in the signaling pathways of T-lymphocytes. Here, we describe the generation and characterization of a specific monoclonal antibody raised against the N-terminal domains of recombinant trout Lck that can recognize Lck protein(s) from trout thymocyte lysates that are similar in size (???57 kDa) to mammalian Lck. This antibody also reacted with permeabilized lymphocytes during FACS analysis, indicating its potential usage for cellular analyses of trout lymphocytes, thus representing an important tool for investigations of salmonid T-cell function.

  18. A Gradient of ATP Affinities Generates an Asymmetric Power Stroke Driving the Chaperonin TRIC/CCT Folding Cycle

    PubMed Central

    Reissmann, Stefanie; Joachimiak, Lukasz A.; Chen, Bryan; Meyer, Anne S.; Nguyen, Anthony; Frydman, Judith

    2012-01-01

    SUMMARY The eukaryotic chaperonin TRiC/CCT uses ATP cycling to fold many essential proteins that other chaperones cannot fold. This 1 MDa hetero-oligomer consists of two identical stacked rings assembled from eight paralogous subunits, each containing a conserved ATP-binding domain. Here, we report a dramatic asymmetry in the ATP utilization cycle of this ring-shaped chaperonin, despite its apparently symmetric architecture. Only four of the eight different subunits bind ATP at physiological concentrations. ATP binding and hydrolysis by the low-affinity subunits is fully dispensable for TRiC function in vivo. The conserved nucleotide-binding hierarchy among TRiC subunits is evolutionarily modulated through differential nucleoside contacts. Strikingly, high-and low-affinity subunits are spatially segregated within two contiguous hemispheres in the ring, generating an asymmetric power stroke that drives the folding cycle. This unusual mode of ATP utilization likely serves to orchestrate a directional mechanism underlying TRiC/CCT’s unique ability to fold complex eukaryotic proteins. PMID:23041314

  19. The Molecular Switching Mechanism at the Conserved D(E)RY Motif in Class-A GPCRs.

    PubMed

    Sandoval, Angelica; Eichler, Stefanie; Madathil, Sineej; Reeves, Philip J; Fahmy, Karim; Böckmann, Rainer A

    2016-07-12

    The disruption of ionic and H-bond interactions between the cytosolic ends of transmembrane helices TM3 and TM6 of class-A (rhodopsin-like) G protein-coupled receptors (GPCRs) is a hallmark for their activation by chemical or physical stimuli. In the bovine photoreceptor rhodopsin, this is accompanied by proton uptake at Glu(134) in the class-conserved D(E)RY motif. Studies on TM3 model peptides proposed a crucial role of the lipid bilayer in linking protonation to stabilization of an active state-like conformation. However, the molecular details of this linkage could not be resolved and have been addressed in this study by molecular dynamics (MD) simulations on TM3 model peptides in a bilayer of 1,2-dioleoyl-sn-glycero-3-phosphocholine (DOPC). We show that protonation of the conserved glutamic acid alters the peptide insertion depth in the membrane, its side-chain rotamer preferences, and stabilizes the C-terminal helical structure. These factors contribute to the rise of the side-chain pKa (> 6) and to reduced polarity around the TM3 C terminus as confirmed by fluorescence spectroscopy. Helix stabilization requires the protonated carboxyl group; unexpectedly, this stabilization could not be evoked with an amide in MD simulations. Additionally, time-resolved Fourier transform infrared (FTIR) spectroscopy of TM3 model peptides revealed a different kinetics for lipid ester carbonyl hydration, suggesting that the carboxyl is linked to more extended H-bond clusters than an amide. Remarkably, this was seen as well in DOPC-reconstituted Glu(134)- and Gln(134)-containing bovine opsin mutants and demonstrates that the D(E)RY motif is a hydrated microdomain. The function of the D(E)RY motif as a proton switch is suggested to be based on the reorganization of the H-bond network at the membrane interface. PMID:27410736

  20. Fermilab D-0 Experimental Facility: Energy conservation report and mechanical systems design optimization and cost analysis study

    SciTech Connect

    Krstulovich, S.F.

    1987-10-31

    This report is developed as part of the Fermilab D-0 Experimental Facility Project Title II Design Documentation Update. As such, it concentrates primarily on HVAC mechanical systems design optimization and cost analysis.

  1. An approach for generating trajectory-based dynamics which conserves the canonical distribution in the phase space formulation of quantum mechanics. I. Theories

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Liu, Jian; Miller, William H.

    2011-03-01

    We have reformulated and generalized our recent work [J. Liu and W. H. Miller, J. Chem. Phys. 126, 234110 (2007)] into an approach for generating a family of trajectory-based dynamics methods in the phase space formulation of quantum mechanics. The approach (equilibrium Liouville dynamics) is in the spirit of Liouville's theorem in classical mechanics. The trajectory-based dynamics is able to conserve the quantum canonical distribution for the thermal equilibrium system and approaches classical dynamics in the classical (ℏ → 0), high temperature (β → 0), and harmonic limits. Equilibrium Liouville dynamics provides the framework for the development of novel theoretical/computational tools for studying quantum dynamical effects in large/complex molecular systems.

  2. An approach for generating trajectory-based dynamics which conserves the canonical distribution in the phase space formulation of quantum mechanics. I. Theories.

    PubMed

    Liu, Jian; Miller, William H

    2011-03-14

    We have reformulated and generalized our recent work [J. Liu and W. H. Miller, J. Chem. Phys. 126, 234110 (2007)] into an approach for generating a family of trajectory-based dynamics methods in the phase space formulation of quantum mechanics. The approach (equilibrium Liouville dynamics) is in the spirit of Liouville's theorem in classical mechanics. The trajectory-based dynamics is able to conserve the quantum canonical distribution for the thermal equilibrium system and approaches classical dynamics in the classical (ℏ → 0), high temperature (β → 0), and harmonic limits. Equilibrium Liouville dynamics provides the framework for the development of novel theoretical∕computational tools for studying quantum dynamical effects in large∕complex molecular systems. PMID:21405150

  3. PREFACE Protein folding: lessons learned and new frontiers Protein folding: lessons learned and new frontiers

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Pappu, Rohit V.; Nussinov, Ruth

    2009-03-01

    multi-scale dynamical problem when one considers the synergies between protein expression, spontaneous folding, chaperonin-assisted folding, protein targeting, the kinetics of post-translational modifications, protein degradation, and of course the drive to avoid aggregation. Further, there is growing recognition that cells not only tolerate but select for proteins that are intrinsically disordered. These proteins are essential for many crucial activities, and yet their inability to fold in isolation makes them prone to proteolytic processing and aggregation. In the series of papers that make up this special focus on protein folding in physical biology, leading researchers provide insights into diverse cross-sections of problems in protein folding. Barrick provides a concise review of what we have learned from the study of two-state folders and draws attention to how several unanswered questions are being approached using studies on large repeat proteins. Dissecting the contribution of hydration-mediated interactions to driving forces for protein folding and assembly has been extremely challenging. There is renewed interest in using hydrostatic pressure as a tool to access folding intermediates and decipher the role of partially hydrated states in folding, misfolding, and aggregation. Silva and Foguel review many of the nuances that have been uncovered by perturbing hydrostatic pressure as a thermodynamic parameter. As noted above, protein folding in vivo is expected to be considerably more complex than the folding of two-state proteins in dilute solutions. Lucent et al review the state-of-the-art in the development of quantitative theories to explain chaperonin-assisted folding in vivo. Additionally, they highlight unanswered questions pertaining to the processing of unfolded/misfolded proteins by the chaperone machinery. Zhuang et al present results that focus on the effects of surface tethering on transition state ensembles and folding mechanisms of a model two

  4. Structure-Based Prediction of Protein-Folding Transition Paths.

    PubMed

    Jacobs, William M; Shakhnovich, Eugene I

    2016-09-01

    We propose a general theory to describe the distribution of protein-folding transition paths. We show that transition paths follow a predictable sequence of high-free-energy transient states that are separated by free-energy barriers. Each transient state corresponds to the assembly of one or more discrete, cooperative units, which are determined directly from the native structure. We show that the transition state on a folding pathway is reached when a small number of critical contacts are formed between a specific set of substructures, after which folding proceeds downhill in free energy. This approach suggests a natural resolution for distinguishing parallel folding pathways and provides a simple means to predict the rate-limiting step in a folding reaction. Our theory identifies a common folding mechanism for proteins with diverse native structures and establishes general principles for the self-assembly of polymers with specific interactions. PMID:27602721

  5. Examination of postmortem retinal folds: A non-invasive study.

    PubMed

    Oshima, Toru; Yoshikawa, Hiroshi; Ohtani, Maki; Mimasaka, Sohtaro

    2015-02-01

    The postmortem retinal fold has been previously documented, but its mechanism of formation is not known. All previous studies of the fold involved invasive techniques and the postmortem ocular fundus has yet to be non-invasively examined. Our study used the non-invasive techniques of monocular indirect ophthalmoscopy and ocular echography to examine 79 postmortem eyes of 42 bodies. We examined whether the postmortem retinal fold was associated with postmortem time, position, and/or age. Age was significantly associated with postmortem retinal fold formation (Mann-Whitney U test, P = 0.013), which led us to examine the effect of posterior vitreous detachment (PVD) on retinal folds. The absence of a PVD was statistically associated with the presence of a retinal fold (Fisher's exact test, P < 0.0001). Interestingly, the presence of a PVD was also significantly correlated with retinal fold height (Mann-Whitney U test, P < 0.0001). Therefore, we hypothesized that retinal folds result from postmortem vitreoretinal traction caused by eyeball flaccidity. We also believe that the loss of retinochoroidal hydrostatic pressure plays a role. It is important that forensic pathologists not confuse a postmortem retinal fold with traumatic retinal detachment or perimacular retinal folds caused by child abuse. When child abuse is suspected, forensic pathologists should perform enucleation and a subsequent histological examination for confirmation. PMID:25623189

  6. Exploring the protein funnel energy landscape for folding and function

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Onuchic, Jose

    2005-03-01

    Globally the energy landscape of a folding protein resembles a partially rough funnel. Using minimalist model simulations together with analytical theory, we learn about good (minimally frustrated) folding sequences and non-folding (frustrated) sequences In addition to the need to minimize energetic frustration, the fold topology also plays a major role in the folding mechanism. Some folding motifs are easier to design than others, suggesting the possibility that evolution not only selected sequences with sufficiently small energetic frustration but also more easily designable native structures. We have demonstrated for several proteins (such as CI2 and SH3) that they are sufficiently well designed (i.e., reduced energetic frustration) that much of the heterogeneity observed in their transition state ensemble (TSE) is determined by topology. Topological effects go beyond the TSE. The overall structure of the on-route and off-route (traps) intermediates for the folding of more complex proteins and protein dimers is also strongly influenced by topology.this theoretical framework, simulations of minimalist models and their connections to more computationally-expensive all-atom simulations, we are now in the process of obtaining a quantitative understanding of the folding problem, which allows for a direct comparison to a new generation of folding experiments. Connections between the folding landscape and protein function will also be discussed.

  7. Disassembly of yeast 80S ribosomes into subunits is a concerted action of ribosome-assisted folding of denatured protein.

    PubMed

    Chakraborty, Biprashekhar; Bhakta, Sayan; Sengupta, Jayati

    2016-01-22

    It has been shown by several groups that ribosome can assist folding of denatured protein in vitro and the process is conserved across the species. Domain V of large ribosomal rRNA which occupies the intersubunit side of the large subunit was identified as the key player responsible for chaperoning the folding process. Thus, it is conceivable that denatured protein needs to access the intersubunit space of the ribosome in order to get folded. In this study, we have investigated the mechanism of release of the protein from the eukaryotic ribosome following reactivation. We have observed significant splitting of yeast 80S ribosome when incubated with the denatured BCAII protein. Energy-free disassembly mechanism functions in low Mg(+2) ion concentration for prokaryotic ribosomes. Eukaryotic ribosomes do not show significant splitting even at low Mg(+2) ion concentration. In this respect, denatured protein-induced disassembly of eukaryotic ribosome without the involvement of any external energy source is intriguing. For prokaryotic ribosomes, it was reported that the denatured protein induces ribosome splitting into subunits in order to access domain V-rRNA. In contrast, our results suggest an alternative mechanism for eukaryotic ribosomal rRNA-mediated protein folding and subsequent separation of the subunits by which release of the activated-protein occurs. PMID:26723252

  8. QGRS-Conserve: a computational method for discovering evolutionarily conserved G-quadruplex motifs

    PubMed Central

    2014-01-01

    Background Nucleic acids containing guanine tracts can form quadruplex structures via non-Watson-Crick base pairing. Formation of G-quadruplexes is associated with the regulation of important biological functions such as transcription, genetic instability, DNA repair, DNA replication, epigenetic mechanisms, regulation of translation, and alternative splicing. G-quadruplexes play important roles in human diseases and are being considered as targets for a variety of therapies. Identification of functional G-quadruplexes and the study of their overall distribution in genomes and transcriptomes is an important pursuit. Traditional computational methods map sequence motifs capable of forming G-quadruplexes but have difficulty in distinguishing motifs that occur by chance from ones which fold into G-quadruplexes. Results We present Quadruplex forming ‘G’-rich sequences (QGRS)-Conserve, a computational method for calculating motif conservation across exomes and supports filtering to provide researchers with more precise methods of studying G-quadruplex distribution patterns. Our method quantitatively evaluates conservation between quadruplexes found in homologous nucleotide sequences based on several motif structural characteristics. QGRS-Conserve also efficiently manages overlapping G-quadruplex sequences such that the resulting datasets can be analyzed effectively. Conclusions We have applied QGRS-Conserve to identify a large number of G-quadruplex motifs in the human exome conserved across several mammalian and non-mammalian species. We have successfully identified multiple homologs of many previously published G-quadruplexes that play post-transcriptional regulatory roles in human genes. Preliminary large-scale analysis identified many homologous G-quadruplexes in the 5′- and 3′-untranslated regions of mammalian species. An expectedly smaller set of G-quadruplex motifs was found to be conserved across larger phylogenetic distances. QGRS-Conserve provides means

  9. Influence of vein fabric on strain distribution and fold kinematics

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Torremans, Koen; Muchez, Philippe; Sintubin, Manuel

    2014-05-01

    Abundant pre-folding, bedding-parallel fibrous dolomite veins in shale are found associated with the Nkana-Mindola stratiform Cu-Co deposit in the Central African Copperbelt, Zambia. These monomineralic veins extend for several meters along strike, with a fibrous infill orthogonal to low-tortuosity vein walls. Growth morphologies vary from antitaxial with a pronounced median surface to asymmetric syntaxial, always with small but quantifiable growth competition. Subsequently, these veins were folded. In this study, we aim to constrain the kinematic fold mechanism by which strain is accommodated in these veins, estimate paleorheology at time of deformation and investigate the influence of vein fabric on deformation during folding. Finally, the influence of the deformation on known metallogenetic stages is assessed. Various deformation styles are observed, ultimately related to vein attitude across tight to close lower-order, hectometre-scale folds. In fold hinges, at low to average dips, veins are (poly-)harmonically to disharmonically folded as parasitic folds in single or multilayer systems. With increasing distance from the fold hinge, parasitic fold amplitude decreases and asymmetry increases. At high dips in the limbs, low-displacement duplication thrusts of veins at low angles to bedding are abundant. Slickenfibres and slickenlines are sub-perpendicular to fold hinges and shallow-dipping slickenfibre-step lineations are parallel to local fold hinge lines. A dip isogon analysis of reconstructed fold geometries prior to homogeneous shortening reveals type 1B parallel folds for the veins and type 1C for the matrix. Two main deformation mechanisms are identified in folded veins. Firstly, undulatory extinction, subgrains and fluid inclusions planes parallel the fibre long axis, with deformation intensity increasing away from the fold hinges, indicate intracrystalline strain accumulation. Secondly, intergranular deformation through bookshelf rotation of fibres, via

  10. Self-folding graphene-polymer bilayers

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Deng, Tao; Yoon, ChangKyu; Jin, Qianru; Li, Mingen; Liu, Zewen; Gracias, David H.

    2015-05-01

    In order to incorporate the extraordinary intrinsic thermal, electrical, mechanical, and optical properties of graphene with three dimensional (3D) flexible substrates, we introduce a solvent-driven self-folding approach using graphene-polymer bilayers. A polymer (SU-8) film was spin coated atop chemically vapor deposited graphene films on wafer substrates and graphene-polymer bilayers were patterned with or without metal electrodes using photolithography, thin film deposition, and etching. After patterning, the bilayers were released from the substrates and they self-folded to form fully integrated, curved, and folded structures. In contrast to planar graphene sensors on rigid substrates, we assembled curved and folded sensors that are flexible and they feature smaller form factors due to their 3D geometry and large surface areas due to their multiple rolled architectures. We believe that this approach could be used to assemble a range of high performance 3D electronic and optical devices of relevance to sensing, diagnostics, wearables, and energy harvesting.

  11. Self-folding graphene-polymer bilayers

    SciTech Connect

    Deng, Tao; Yoon, ChangKyu; Jin, Qianru; Li, Mingen; Liu, Zewen; Gracias, David H.

    2015-05-18

    In order to incorporate the extraordinary intrinsic thermal, electrical, mechanical, and optical properties of graphene with three dimensional (3D) flexible substrates, we introduce a solvent-driven self-folding approach using graphene-polymer bilayers. A polymer (SU-8) film was spin coated atop chemically vapor deposited graphene films on wafer substrates and graphene-polymer bilayers were patterned with or without metal electrodes using photolithography, thin film deposition, and etching. After patterning, the bilayers were released from the substrates and they self-folded to form fully integrated, curved, and folded structures. In contrast to planar graphene sensors on rigid substrates, we assembled curved and folded sensors that are flexible and they feature smaller form factors due to their 3D geometry and large surface areas due to their multiple rolled architectures. We believe that this approach could be used to assemble a range of high performance 3D electronic and optical devices of relevance to sensing, diagnostics, wearables, and energy harvesting.

  12. Protein folding by motion planning

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Thomas, Shawna; Song, Guang; Amato, Nancy M.

    2005-12-01

    We investigate a novel approach for studying protein folding that has evolved from robotics motion planning techniques called probabilistic roadmap methods (PRMs). Our focus is to study issues related to the folding process, such as the formation of secondary and tertiary structures, assuming we know the native fold. A feature of our PRM-based framework is that the large sets of folding pathways in the roadmaps it produces, in just a few hours on a desktop PC, provide global information about the protein's energy landscape. This is an advantage over other simulation methods such as molecular dynamics or Monte Carlo methods which require more computation and produce only a single trajectory in each run. In our initial studies, we obtained encouraging results for several small proteins. In this paper, we investigate more sophisticated techniques for analyzing the folding pathways in our roadmaps. In addition to more formally revalidating our previous results, we present a case study showing that our technique captures known folding differences between the structurally similar proteins G and L. This research was supported in part by NSF CAREER Award CCR-9624315, NSF Grants ACI-9872126, EIA-9975018, EIA-0103742, EIA-9805823, ACR-0113971, CCR-0113974, EIA-9810937, EIA-0079874 and the Texas Higher Education Coordinating Board grant ATP-000512-0261-2001. ST was supported in part by an NSF Graduate Research Fellowship. GS was supported in part by an IBM PhD Fellowship.

  13. Autophagy, a Conserved Mechanism for Protein Degradation, Responds to Heat, and Other Abiotic Stresses in Capsicum annuum L.

    PubMed Central

    Zhai, Yufei; Guo, Meng; Wang, Hu; Lu, Jinping; Liu, Jinhong; Zhang, Chong; Gong, Zhenhui; Lu, Minghui

    2016-01-01

    Abiotic stresses negatively affect plants growth and development by inducing protein denaturation, and autophagy degrades the damaged proteins to alleviate their toxicity, however, little is known about the involvement of autophagy in pepper (Capsicum annuum L.) tolerances to abiotic stresses. In this study, we identified autophagy-related gene (ATG) members in the whole genome of pepper by HMM method and analyzed their expression profiles in response to heat and other abiotic stresses by quantitative real-time PCR. The results showed that the CaATG contained 15 core ATG members including 29 ATG proteins with their respective conserved functional domains, involving the whole process of autophagy. Under normal environmental condition, the expression of CaATG genes showed tissue- and developmental stage-specific patterns, while under abiotic stresses of salt, drought, heat, cold and carbohydrate starvation, the accumulation of autophagosome punctate increased and the expression level of CaATG genes changed with stress type-dependent pattern, which indicates the linkage of autophagy in pepper response to abiotic stresses. After treated with heat stress, both the number of up-regulated CaATG genes and the increment of autophagosome punctate were higher in pepper thermotolerant line R9 than those in thermosensitive line B6, implying an association of autophagy with heat tolerance. In addition, CaATG6 was predicted to interact with CaHSP90 family members. Our study suggests that autophagy is connected to pepper tolerances to heat and other abiotic stresses. PMID:26904087

  14. Role of Nrf2/HO-1 system in development, oxidative stress response and diseases: an evolutionarily conserved mechanism.

    PubMed

    Loboda, Agnieszka; Damulewicz, Milena; Pyza, Elzbieta; Jozkowicz, Alicja; Dulak, Jozef

    2016-09-01

    The multifunctional regulator nuclear factor erythroid 2-related factor (Nrf2) is considered not only as a cytoprotective factor regulating the expression of genes coding for anti-oxidant, anti-inflammatory and detoxifying proteins, but it is also a powerful modulator of species longevity. The vertebrate Nrf2 belongs to Cap 'n' Collar (Cnc) bZIP family of transcription factors and shares a high homology with SKN-1 from Caenorhabditis elegans or CncC found in Drosophila melanogaster. The major characteristics of Nrf2 are to some extent mimicked by Nrf2-dependent genes and their proteins including heme oxygenase-1 (HO-1), which besides removing toxic heme, produces biliverdin, iron ions and carbon monoxide. HO-1 and their products exert beneficial effects through the protection against oxidative injury, regulation of apoptosis, modulation of inflammation as well as contribution to angiogenesis. On the other hand, the disturbances in the proper HO-1 level are associated with the pathogenesis of some age-dependent disorders, including neurodegeneration, cancer or macular degeneration. This review summarizes our knowledge about Nrf2 and HO-1 across different phyla suggesting their conservative role as stress-protective and anti-aging factors. PMID:27100828

  15. Folding of a single polygrain layer

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Adamuszek, Marta; Dabrowski, Marcin

    2013-04-01

    Shortening of a mechanically layered rock in the direction parallel to the layering leads to the formation of buckle folds. Simultaneously, the rock microstructure undergoes modification due to changes in geometry and arrangement of the minerals leading to the development of the shape preferred orientation (SPO) and mechanical anisotropy. The progressive deformation influences the effective mechanical properties, which may affect the evolution of the folds. The mechanical anisotropy is considered to have a first-order effect on the fold growth, thus its evolution is potentially a crucial factor in folding process. In contrast to the previous studies, where the anisotropy is often considered as a prescribed (or inherited) property, we treat the anisotropy as a parameter that develops and evolves during deformation. In our numerical model, we study a polygrain, two-phase medium consisting of an effectively strong layer embedded in a weaker matrix. Both the layer and the matrix comprise the same material types but in different proportions. The layer and the matrix are initially mechanically isotropic. The viscosity of individual grains is isotropic, thus the role of the crystallographic orientation is not taken into account. The recrystallization and pressure solution processes are neglected. We investigate the influence of 1) the viscosity ratio between the mineral phases and 2) the effective viscosity ratio between the layer and the matrix on the development and evolution of anisotropy and folding. The complex, polygrain structure is represented using Voronoi polygons, which are then discretized with an unstructured mesh using Triangle software developed by Shewchuk (2007) and then used for the finite element approximations. We solve the incompressible Stokes equations under zero gravity using the finite element method (FEM) solver MILAMIN (Dabrowski et al., 2008). The normal components of the velocity vectors are prescribed at the boundaries according to a pure

  16. Root proliferation in decaying roots and old root channels: A nutrient conservation mechanism in oligotrophic mangrove forests?

    USGS Publications Warehouse

    McKee, K.L.

    2001-01-01

    1. In oligotrophic habitats, proliferation of roots in nutrient-rich microsites may contribute to overall nutrient conservation by plants. Peat-based soils on mangrove islands in Belize are characterized by the presence of decaying roots and numerous old root channels (0.1-3.5 cm diameter) that become filled with living and highly branched roots of Rhizophora mangle and Avicennia germinans. The objectives of this study were to quantify the proliferation of roots in these microsites and to determine what causes this response. 2. Channels formed by the refractory remains of mangrove roots accounted for only 1-2% of total soil volume, but the proportion of roots found within channels varied from 9 to 24% of total live mass. Successive generations of roots growing inside increasingly smaller root channels were also found. 3. When artificial channels constructed of PVC pipe were buried in the peat for 2 years, those filled with nutrient-rich organic matter had six times more roots than empty or sand-filled channels, indicating a response to greater nutrient availability rather than to greater space or less impedance to root growth. 4. Root proliferation inside decaying roots may improve recovery of nutrients released from decomposing tissues before they can be leached or immobilized in this intertidal environment. Greatest root proliferation in channels occurred in interior forest zones characterized by greater soil waterlogging, which suggests that this may be a strategy for nutrient capture that minimizes oxygen losses from the whole root system. 5. Improved efficiency of nutrient acquisition at the individual plant level has implications for nutrient economy at the ecosystem level and may explain, in part, how mangroves persist and grow in nutrient-poor environments.

  17. Origin of the vertebrate body plan via mechanically biased conservation of regular geometrical patterns in the structure of the blastula.

    PubMed

    Edelman, David B; McMenamin, Mark; Sheesley, Peter; Pivar, Stuart

    2016-09-01

    We present a plausible account of the origin of the archetypal vertebrate bauplan. We offer a theoretical reconstruction of the geometrically regular structure of the blastula resulting from the sequential subdivision of the egg, followed by mechanical deformations of the blastula in subsequent stages of gastrulation. We suggest that the formation of the vertebrate bauplan during development, as well as fixation of its variants over the course of evolution, have been constrained and guided by global mechanical biases. Arguably, the role of such biases in directing morphology-though all but neglected in previous accounts of both development and macroevolution-is critical to any substantive explanation for the origin of the archetypal vertebrate bauplan. We surmise that the blastula inherently preserves the underlying geometry of the cuboidal array of eight cells produced by the first three cleavages that ultimately define the medial-lateral, dorsal-ventral, and anterior-posterior axes of the future body plan. Through graphical depictions, we demonstrate the formation of principal structures of the vertebrate body via mechanical deformation of predictable geometrical patterns during gastrulation. The descriptive rigor of our model is supported through comparisons with previous characterizations of the embryonic and adult vertebrate bauplane. Though speculative, the model addresses the poignant absence in the literature of any plausible account of the origin of vertebrate morphology. A robust solution to the problem of morphogenesis-currently an elusive goal-will only emerge from consideration of both top-down (e.g., the mechanical constraints and geometric properties considered here) and bottom-up (e.g., molecular and mechano-chemical) influences. PMID:27392530

  18. Collections Conservation.

    ERIC Educational Resources Information Center

    DeCandido, Robert

    Collections conservation is an approach to the preservation treatment of books and book-like materials that is conceptualized and organized in terms of large groups of materials. This guide is intended to enable a library to evaluate its current collections conservation activities. The introduction describes collections conservation and gives…

  19. Evolution of the beta-propeller fold.

    PubMed

    Chaudhuri, Indronil; Söding, Johannes; Lupas, Andrei N

    2008-05-01

    beta-Propellers are toroidal folds, in which repeated, four-stranded beta-meanders are arranged in a circular and slightly tilted fashion, like the blades of a propeller. They are found in all domains of life, with a strong preponderance among eukaryotes. Propellers show considerable sequence diversity and are classified into six separate structural groups by the SCOP and CATH databases. Despite this diversity, they often show similarities across groups, not only in structure but also in sequence, raising the possibility of a common origin. In agreement with this hypothesis, most propellers group together in a cluster map of all-beta folds generated by sequence similarity, because of numerous pairwise matches, many of which are individually nonsignificant. In total, 45 of 60 propellers in the SCOP25 database, covering four SCOP folds, are clustered in this group and analysis with sensitive sequence comparison methods shows that they are similar at a level indicative of homology. Two mechanisms appear to contribute to the evolution of beta-propellers: amplification from single blades and subsequent functional differentiation. The observation of propellers with nearly identical blades in genomic sequences show that these mechanisms are still operating today. PMID:17979191

  20. Improved Method of Design for Folding Inflatable Shells

    NASA Technical Reports Server (NTRS)

    Johnson, Christopher J.

    2009-01-01

    An improved method of designing complexly shaped inflatable shells to be assembled from gores was conceived for original application to the inflatable outer shell of a developmental habitable spacecraft module having a cylindrical mid-length section with toroidal end caps. The method is also applicable to inflatable shells of various shapes for terrestrial use. The method addresses problems associated with the assembly, folding, transport, and deployment of inflatable shells that may comprise multiple layers and have complex shapes that can include such doubly curved surfaces as toroids and spheres. One particularly difficult problem is that of mathematically defining fold lines on a gore pattern in a double- curvature region. Moreover, because the fold lines in a double-curvature region tend to be curved, there is a practical problem of how to implement the folds. Another problem is that of modifying the basic gore shapes and sizes for the various layers so that when they are folded as part of the integral structure, they do not mechanically interfere with each other at the fold lines. Heretofore, it has been a common practice to design an inflatable shell to be assembled in the deployed configuration, without regard for the need to fold it into compact form. Typically, the result has been that folding has been a difficult, time-consuming process resulting in a An improved method of designing complexly shaped inflatable shells to be assembled from gores was conceived for original application to the inflatable outer shell of a developmental habitable spacecraft module having a cylindrical mid-length section with toroidal end caps. The method is also applicable to inflatable shells of various shapes for terrestrial use. The method addresses problems associated with the assembly, folding, transport, and deployment of inflatable shells that may comprise multiple layers and have complex shapes that can include such doubly curved surfaces as toroids and spheres. One

  1. Polymer Uncrossing and Knotting in Protein Folding, and Their Role in Minimal Folding Pathways

    PubMed Central

    Mohazab, Ali R.; Plotkin, Steven S.

    2013-01-01

    We introduce a method for calculating the extent to which chain non-crossing is important in the most efficient, optimal trajectories or pathways for a protein to fold. This involves recording all unphysical crossing events of a ghost chain, and calculating the minimal uncrossing cost that would have been required to avoid such events. A depth-first tree search algorithm is applied to find minimal transformations to fold , , , and knotted proteins. In all cases, the extra uncrossing/non-crossing distance is a small fraction of the total distance travelled by a ghost chain. Different structural classes may be distinguished by the amount of extra uncrossing distance, and the effectiveness of such discrimination is compared with other order parameters. It was seen that non-crossing distance over chain length provided the best discrimination between structural and kinetic classes. The scaling of non-crossing distance with chain length implies an inevitable crossover to entanglement-dominated folding mechanisms for sufficiently long chains. We further quantify the minimal folding pathways by collecting the sequence of uncrossing moves, which generally involve leg, loop, and elbow-like uncrossing moves, and rendering the collection of these moves over the unfolded ensemble as a multiple-transformation “alignment”. The consensus minimal pathway is constructed and shown schematically for representative cases of an , , and knotted protein. An overlap parameter is defined between pathways; we find that proteins have minimal overlap indicating diverse folding pathways, knotted proteins are highly constrained to follow a dominant pathway, and proteins are somewhere in between. Thus we have shown how topological chain constraints can induce dominant pathway mechanisms in protein folding. PMID:23365638

  2. Targeting Fold Stiffness to Design Enhanced Origami Structures

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Buskohl, Philip; Bazzan, Giorgio; Abbott, Andrew; Durstock, Michael; Vaia, Richard

    2014-03-01

    Structures with adaptive geometry are increasingly of interest for actuation, sensing and packaging applications. Origami structures, by definition, can ``shape-shift'' between multiple geometric configurations that are predefined by a pattern of folds. Plastic deformation and local failure at the fold lines transform an originally homogenous material into a grid with locally tailored mechanical properties that bias the response of the overall structure to external loading. Typically, origami structures focus on uniformly stiff fold lines with rigid facets. In this study, we discuss how localized variations in stiffness can influence global properties, including energy budget to transition from flat to folded structure, the preferred path through configuration space, and the final mechanical response of the folded architecture. A simple, bi-stable origami fold pattern is laser machined into polypropylene sheets of different compliance and the critical load of the transition is measured. We model the structure as a truss with bar elongation, folding, and facet bending in order to predict ways to enhance or mitigate the critical load. Targeting local folding properties to modify global performance directly extends to the analysis of more complex architectures.

  3. Rapid compaction during RNA folding

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Russell, Rick; Millett, Ian S.; Tate, Mark W.; Kwok, Lisa W.; Nakatani, Bradley; Gruner, Sol M.; Mochrie, Simon G. J.; Pande, Vijay; Doniach, Sebastian; Herschlag, Daniel; Pollack, Lois

    2002-04-01

    We have used small angle x-ray scattering and computer simulations with a coarse-grained model to provide a time-resolved picture of the global folding process of the Tetrahymena group I RNA over a time window of more than five orders of magnitude. A substantial phase of compaction is observed on the low millisecond timescale, and the overall compaction and global shape changes are largely complete within one second, earlier than any known tertiary contacts are formed. This finding indicates that the RNA forms a nonspecifically collapsed intermediate and then searches for its tertiary contacts within a highly restricted subset of conformational space. The collapsed intermediate early in folding of this RNA is grossly akin to molten globule intermediates in protein folding.

  4. Differential-geometrical approach to the dynamics of dissipationless incompressible Hall magnetohydrodynamics: I. Lagrangian mechanics on semidirect product of two volume preserving diffeomorphisms and conservation laws

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Araki, Keisuke

    2015-05-01

    The dynamics of a dissipationless incompressible Hall magnetohydrodynamic (HMHD) medium is formulated using Lagrangian mechanics on a semidirect product of two volume preserving diffeomorphism groups. In the case of {{{T}}3} or E3, the generalized Elsässer variables (GEV) introduced by (Galtier 2006 J. Plasma Phys. 72 721-69) yield remarkably simple expressions of basic formulas and equations such as the structure constants of Lie algebra, the equation of motion, and the conservation laws. Four constants of motion, where three of the four are independent, are naturally derived from the GEV representation of the equation of motion for the HMHD system: total plasma energy, magnetic helicity, hybrid helicity, and the modified cross helicity.

  5. Two more approaches for generating trajectory-based dynamics which conserves the canonical distribution in the phase space formulation of quantum mechanics.

    PubMed

    Liu, Jian

    2011-05-21

    We show two more approaches for generating trajectory-based dynamics in the phase space formulation of quantum mechanics: "equilibrium continuity dynamics" (ECD) in the spirit of the phase space continuity equation in classical mechanics, and "equilibrium Hamiltonian dynamics" (EHD) in the spirit of the Hamilton equations of motion in classical mechanics. Both ECD and EHD can recover exact thermal correlation functions (of even nonlinear operators, i.e., nonlinear functions of position or momentum operators) in the classical, high temperature, and harmonic limits. Both ECD and EHD conserve the quasi-probability within the infinitesimal volume dx(t)dp(t) around the phase point (x(t), p(t)) along the trajectory. Numerical tests of both approaches in the Wigner phase space have been made for two strongly anharmonic model problems and a double well system, for each potential auto-correlation functions of both linear and nonlinear operators have been calculated. The results suggest EHD and ECD are two additional potential useful approaches for describing quantum effects for complex systems in condense phase. PMID:21599047

  6. An iterative Riemann solver for systems of hyperbolic conservation law s, with application to hyperelastic solid mechanics

    SciTech Connect

    Miller, Gregory H.

    2003-08-06

    In this paper we present a general iterative method for the solution of the Riemann problem for hyperbolic systems of PDEs. The method is based on the multiple shooting method for free boundary value problems. We demonstrate the method by solving one-dimensional Riemann problems for hyperelastic solid mechanics. Even for conditions representative of routine laboratory conditions and military ballistics, dramatic differences are seen between the exact and approximate Riemann solution. The greatest discrepancy arises from misallocation of energy between compressional and thermal modes by the approximate solver, resulting in nonphysical entropy and temperature estimates. Several pathological conditions arise in common practice, and modifications to the method to handle these are discussed. These include points where genuine nonlinearity is lost, degeneracies, and eigenvector deficiencies that occur upon melting.

  7. Avibactam and Class C β-Lactamases: Mechanism of Inhibition, Conservation of the Binding Pocket, and Implications for Resistance

    PubMed Central

    Johnstone, M. R.; Ross, P. L.; McLaughlin, R. E.; Olivier, N. B.

    2014-01-01

    Avibactam is a novel non-β-lactam β-lactamase inhibitor that inhibits a wide range of β-lactamases. These include class A, class C, and some class D enzymes, which erode the activity of β-lactam drugs in multidrug-resistant pathogens like Pseudomonas aeruginosa and Enterobacteriaceae spp. Avibactam is currently in clinical development in combination with the β-lactam antibiotics ceftazidime, ceftaroline fosamil, and aztreonam. Avibactam has the potential to be the first β-lactamase inhibitor that might provide activity against class C-mediated resistance, which represents a growing concern in both hospital- and community-acquired infections. Avibactam has an unusual mechanism of action: it is a covalent inhibitor that acts via ring opening, but in contrast to other currently used β-lactamase inhibitors, this reaction is reversible. Here, we present a high-resolution structure of avibactam bound to a class C β-lactamase, AmpC, from P. aeruginosa that provided insight into the mechanism of both acylation and recyclization in this enzyme class and highlighted the differences observed between class A and class C inhibition. Furthermore, variants resistant to avibactam that identified the residues important for inhibition were isolated. Finally, the structural information was used to predict effective inhibition by sequence analysis and functional studies of class C β-lactamases from a large and diverse set of contemporary clinical isolates (P. aeruginosa and several Enterobacteriaceae spp.) obtained from recent infections to understand any preexisting variability in the binding pocket that might affect inhibition by avibactam. PMID:25022578

  8. Investigation of the parallel tempering method for protein folding

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Schug, Alexander; Herges, Thomas; Verma, Abhinav; Wenzel, Wolfgang

    2005-05-01

    We investigate the suitability and efficiency of an adapted version of the parallel tempering method for all-atom protein folding. We have recently developed an all-atom free energy force field (PFF01) for protein structure prediction with stochastic optimization methods. Here we report reproducible folding of the 20-amino-acid trp-cage protein and the conserved 40-amino-acid three-helix HIV accessory protein with an adapted parallel tempering method. We find that the native state, for both proteins, is correctly predicted to 2 Å backbone root mean square deviation and analyse the efficiency of the simulation approach.

  9. Unraveling metamaterial properties in zigzag-base folded sheets.

    PubMed

    Eidini, Maryam; Paulino, Glaucio H

    2015-09-01

    Creating complex spatial objects from a flat sheet of material using origami folding techniques has attracted attention in science and engineering. In the present work, we use the geometric properties of partially folded zigzag strips to better describe the kinematics of known zigzag/herringbone-base folded sheet metamaterials such as Miura-ori. Inspired by the kinematics of a one-degree of freedom zigzag strip, we introduce a class of cellular folded mechanical metamaterials comprising different scales of zigzag strips. This class of patterns combines origami folding techniques with kirigami. Using analytical and numerical models, we study the key mechanical properties of the folded materials. We show that our class of patterns, by expanding on the design space of Miura-ori, is appropriate for a wide range of applications from mechanical metamaterials to deployable structures at small and large scales. We further show that, depending on the geometry, these materials exhibit either negative or positive in-plane Poisson's ratios. By introducing a class of zigzag-base materials in the current study, we unify the concept of in-plane Poisson's ratio for similar materials in the literature and extend it to the class of zigzag-base folded sheet materials. PMID:26601253

  10. Unraveling metamaterial properties in zigzag-base folded sheets

    PubMed Central

    Eidini, Maryam; Paulino, Glaucio H.

    2015-01-01

    Creating complex spatial objects from a flat sheet of material using origami folding techniques has attracted attention in science and engineering. In the present work, we use the geometric properties of partially folded zigzag strips to better describe the kinematics of known zigzag/herringbone-base folded sheet metamaterials such as Miura-ori. Inspired by the kinematics of a one–degree of freedom zigzag strip, we introduce a class of cellular folded mechanical metamaterials comprising different scales of zigzag strips. This class of patterns combines origami folding techniques with kirigami. Using analytical and numerical models, we study the key mechanical properties of the folded materials. We show that our class of patterns, by expanding on the design space of Miura-ori, is appropriate for a wide range of applications from mechanical metamaterials to deployable structures at small and large scales. We further show that, depending on the geometry, these materials exhibit either negative or positive in-plane Poisson’s ratios. By introducing a class of zigzag-base materials in the current study, we unify the concept of in-plane Poisson’s ratio for similar materials in the literature and extend it to the class of zigzag-base folded sheet materials. PMID:26601253

  11. The West Nile virus assembly process evades the conserved antiviral mechanism of the interferon-induced MxA protein

    SciTech Connect

    Hoenen, Antje; Gillespie, Leah; Morgan, Garry; Heide, Peter van der; Khromykh, Alexander; Mackenzie, Jason

    2014-01-05

    Flaviviruses have evolved means to evade host innate immune responses. Recent evidence suggests this is due to prevention of interferon production and signaling in flavivirus-infected cells. Here we show that the interferon-induced MxA protein can sequester the West Nile virus strain Kunjin virus (WNV{sub KUN}) capsid protein in cytoplasmic tubular structures in an expression-replication system. This sequestering resulted in reduced titers of secreted WNV{sub KUN} particles. We show by electron microscopy, tomography and 3D modeling that these cytoplasmic tubular structures form organized bundles. Additionally we show that recombinant ER-targeted MxA can restrict production of infectious WNV{sub KUN} under conditions of virus infection. Our results indicate a co-ordinated and compartmentalized WNV{sub KUN} assembly process may prevent recognition of viral components by MxA, particularly the capsid protein. This recognition can be exploited if MxA is targeted to intracellular sites of WNV{sub KUN} assembly. This results in further understanding of the mechanisms of flavivirus evasion from the immune system. - Highlights: • We show that the ISG MxA can recognize the West Nile virus capsid protein. • Interaction between WNV C protein and MxA induces cytoplasmic fibrils. • MxA can be retargeted to the ER to restrict WNV particle release. • WNV assembly process is a strategy to avoid MxA recognition.

  12. Predicting RNA pseudoknot folding thermodynamics.

    PubMed

    Cao, Song; Chen, Shi-Jie

    2006-01-01

    Based on the experimentally determined atomic coordinates for RNA helices and the self-avoiding walks of the P (phosphate) and C4 (carbon) atoms in the diamond lattice for the polynucleotide loop conformations, we derive a set of conformational entropy parameters for RNA pseudoknots. Based on the entropy parameters, we develop a folding thermodynamics model that enables us to compute the sequence-specific RNA pseudoknot folding free energy landscape and thermodynamics. The model is validated through extensive experimental tests both for the native structures and for the folding thermodynamics. The model predicts strong sequence-dependent helix-loop competitions in the pseudoknot stability and the resultant conformational switches between different hairpin and pseudoknot structures. For instance, for the pseudoknot domain of human telomerase RNA, a native-like and a misfolded hairpin intermediates are found to coexist on the (equilibrium) folding pathways, and the interplay between the stabilities of these intermediates causes the conformational switch that may underlie a human telomerase disease. PMID:16709732

  13. A Population Shift between Sparsely Populated Folding Intermediates Determines Amyloidogenicity.

    PubMed

    Karamanos, Theodoros K; Pashley, Clare L; Kalverda, Arnout P; Thompson, Gary S; Mayzel, Maxim; Orekhov, Vladislav Y; Radford, Sheena E

    2016-05-18

    The balance between protein folding and misfolding is a crucial determinant of amyloid assembly. Transient intermediates that are sparsely populated during protein folding have been identified as key players in amyloid aggregation. However, due to their ephemeral nature, structural characterization of these species remains challenging. Here, using the power of nonuniformly sampled NMR methods we investigate the folding pathway of amyloidogenic and nonamyloidogenic variants of β2-microglobulin (β2m) in atomic detail. Despite folding via common intermediate states, we show that the decreased population of the aggregation-prone ITrans state and population of a less stable, more dynamic species ablate amyloid formation by increasing the energy barrier for amyloid assembly. The results show that subtle changes in conformational dynamics can have a dramatic effect in determining whether a protein is amyloidogenic, without perturbation of the mechanism of protein folding. PMID:27117876

  14. Spectroscopic studies of protein folding: Linear and nonlinear methods

    PubMed Central

    Serrano, Arnaldo L; Waegele, Matthias M; Gai, Feng

    2012-01-01

    Although protein folding is a simple outcome of the underlying thermodynamics, arriving at a quantitative and predictive understanding of how proteins fold nevertheless poses huge challenges. Therefore, both advanced experimental and computational methods are continuously being developed and refined to probe and reveal the atomistic details of protein folding dynamics and mechanisms. Herein, we provide a concise review of recent developments in spectroscopic studies of protein folding, with a focus on new triggering and probing methods. In particular, we describe several laser-based techniques for triggering protein folding/unfolding on the picosecond and/or nanosecond timescales and various linear and nonlinear spectroscopic techniques for interrogating protein conformations, conformational transitions, and dynamics. PMID:22109973

  15. Structural origin of slow diffusion in protein folding.

    PubMed

    Chung, Hoi Sung; Piana-Agostinetti, Stefano; Shaw, David E; Eaton, William A

    2015-09-25

    Experimental, theoretical, and computational studies of small proteins suggest that interresidue contacts not present in the folded structure play little or no role in the self-assembly mechanism. Non-native contacts can, however, influence folding kinetics by introducing additional local minima that slow diffusion over the global free-energy barrier between folded and unfolded states. Here, we combine single-molecule fluorescence with all-atom molecular dynamics simulations to discover the structural origin for the slow diffusion that markedly decreases the folding rate for a designed α-helical protein. Our experimental determination of transition path times and our analysis of the simulations point to non-native salt bridges between helices as the source, which provides a quantitative glimpse of how specific intramolecular interactions influence protein folding rates by altering dynamics and not activation free energies. PMID:26404828

  16. A Population Shift between Sparsely Populated Folding Intermediates Determines Amyloidogenicity

    PubMed Central

    2016-01-01

    The balance between protein folding and misfolding is a crucial determinant of amyloid assembly. Transient intermediates that are sparsely populated during protein folding have been identified as key players in amyloid aggregation. However, due to their ephemeral nature, structural characterization of these species remains challenging. Here, using the power of nonuniformly sampled NMR methods we investigate the folding pathway of amyloidogenic and nonamyloidogenic variants of β2-microglobulin (β2m) in atomic detail. Despite folding via common intermediate states, we show that the decreased population of the aggregation-prone ITrans state and population of a less stable, more dynamic species ablate amyloid formation by increasing the energy barrier for amyloid assembly. The results show that subtle changes in conformational dynamics can have a dramatic effect in determining whether a protein is amyloidogenic, without perturbation of the mechanism of protein folding. PMID:27117876

  17. Scale invariant sheath folds in salt, sediments and shear zones

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Alsop, G. I.; Holdsworth, R. E.; McCaffrey, K. J. W.

    2007-10-01

    Sheath folds are developed in a broad spectrum of geological environments in which material flow occurs, including gravity-driven surficial deformation in ignimbrites, unconsolidated sediments and salt, together with deeper level ductile shear zones in metamorphic rocks. This study represents the first geometric comparison of sheath folds in these different settings across a wide range of scales. Elliptical closures defining eye-folds represent ( y- z) cross sections through highly-curvilinear sheath folds. Our analysis of the published literature, coupled with field observations, reveals remarkably similar ellipticities ( R yz) for sheath folds in metamorphic shear zones ( R yz 4.23), salt ( R yz 4.29), sediment slumps ( R yz 4.34), glaciotectonites ( R yz 4.48), and ignimbrites ( R yz 4.34). Nested eye-folds across this range of materials ( N = 1800) reveal distinct and consistent differences in ellipticity from the outer- ( R yz) to the inner-most ( R y' z' ) elliptical "rings" of individual sheath folds. The variation in ratios from outer to inner rings ( R' = R yz/ R y' z' ) in gravity-driven surficial flows typically displays a relative increase in ellipticity to define cats-eye-folds ( R' < 1) similar to those observed during simple and general shear in metamorphic rocks. We show that sheath folds develop across a range of scales within these different environments, and display elliptical ratios ( R yz) that are remarkably constant ( R2 > 0.99) across 9 orders of magnitude (sheath y axes range from ˜0.1 mm to >75 km). Our findings lead us to conclude that the geometric properties of sheath folds are scale invariant and primarily controlled by the type and amount of strain, with R' also reflecting the rheological significance of layering associated with original buckle fold mechanisms. The scaling pattern of sheath folds reflects the length scales of the precursor buckle folds (and width of deformation zones) across a broad range of materials and

  18. Cellular pathways controlling integron cassette site folding.

    PubMed

    Loot, Céline; Bikard, David; Rachlin, Anna; Mazel, Didier

    2010-08-01

    By mobilizing small DNA units, integrons have a major function in the dissemination of antibiotic resistance among bacteria. The acquisition of gene cassettes occurs by recombination between the attI and attC sites catalysed by the IntI1 integron integrase. These recombination reactions use an unconventional mechanism involving a folded single-stranded attC site. We show that cellular bacterial processes delivering ssDNA, such as conjugation and replication, favour proper folding of the attC site. By developing a very sensitive in vivo assay, we also provide evidence that attC sites can recombine as cruciform structures by extrusion from double-stranded DNA. Moreover, we show an influence of DNA superhelicity on attC site extrusion in vitro and in vivo. We show that the proper folding of the attC site depends on both the propensity to form non-recombinogenic structures and the length of their variable terminal structures. These results draw the network of cell processes that regulate integron recombination. PMID:20628355

  19. Inframammary Fold Reconstruction: A Biomechanical Analysis

    PubMed Central

    Schell, Julia; Uener, Jens; Prescher, Andreas; Scaal, Martin; Puppe, Julian; Warm, Mathias

    2016-01-01

    Background: Inframammary fold reconstruction has scarcely been evaluated in literature. No biomechanical analyses have been performed comparing different reconstructive methods. This evaluation compares the gold-standard suture reconstruction with an intrarib anchor system (Micro BioComposite SutureTak, Arthrex). Methods: Three analysis groups were compared including 8 Sawbone blocks, 22 embalmed cadaver, and 27 regular cadaver specimens (N = 57). Transient mechanical analysis was performed at 5 N/s using an Instron 5565 test frame. Results: Ultimate load favored the anchor system (compared with the gold-standard suture) by a factor of 9.8 (P < 0.0001) for the regular cadaver group and a factor of 1.7 (P < 0.038) for the embalmed cadaver group. A similar statistically significant benefit was shown for stiffness and load at 2-mm displacement. Conclusions: This analysis showed an anchor system to be the biomechanically superior fixation method in terms of ultimate load, fixation stiffness, and displacement at failure when compared with the gold-standard suture method in inframammary fold reconstruction. Because of superior stability in every aspect, an anchor system may be considered for inframammary fold reconstruction. PMID:27257564

  20. RNA folding pathways in stop motion.

    PubMed

    Bottaro, Sandro; Gil-Ley, Alejandro; Bussi, Giovanni

    2016-07-01

    We introduce a method for predicting RNA folding pathways, with an application to the most important RNA tetraloops. The method is based on the idea that ensembles of three-dimensional fragments extracted from high-resolution crystal structures are heterogeneous enough to describe metastable as well as intermediate states. These ensembles are first validated by performing a quantitative comparison against available solution nuclear magnetic resonance (NMR) data of a set of RNA tetranucleotides. Notably, the agreement is better with respect to the one obtained by comparing NMR with extensive all-atom molecular dynamics simulations. We then propose a procedure based on diffusion maps and Markov models that makes it possible to obtain reaction pathways and their relative probabilities from fragment ensembles. This approach is applied to study the helix-to-loop folding pathway of all the tetraloops from the GNRA and UNCG families. The results give detailed insights into the folding mechanism that are compatible with available experimental data and clarify the role of intermediate states observed in previous simulation studies. The method is computationally inexpensive and can be used to study arbitrary conformational transitions. PMID:27091499

  1. RNA folding pathways in stop motion

    PubMed Central

    Bottaro, Sandro; Gil-Ley, Alejandro; Bussi, Giovanni

    2016-01-01

    We introduce a method for predicting RNA folding pathways, with an application to the most important RNA tetraloops. The method is based on the idea that ensembles of three-dimensional fragments extracted from high-resolution crystal structures are heterogeneous enough to describe metastable as well as intermediate states. These ensembles are first validated by performing a quantitative comparison against available solution nuclear magnetic resonance (NMR) data of a set of RNA tetranucleotides. Notably, the agreement is better with respect to the one obtained by comparing NMR with extensive all-atom molecular dynamics simulations. We then propose a procedure based on diffusion maps and Markov models that makes it possible to obtain reaction pathways and their relative probabilities from fragment ensembles. This approach is applied to study the helix-to-loop folding pathway of all the tetraloops from the GNRA and UNCG families. The results give detailed insights into the folding mechanism that are compatible with available experimental data and clarify the role of intermediate states observed in previous simulation studies. The method is computationally inexpensive and can be used to study arbitrary conformational transitions. PMID:27091499

  2. Homogeneous Crystal Nucleation: To Fold or Not to Fold?

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Crist, Buckley

    2007-03-01

    Recent simulations and related theories have addressed interesting aspects of homogeneous nucleation of polymer crystals in very dilute solutions; embryos and very small crystals are composed of folded chains. At the same time there has been renewed activity with experimental studies of homogeneous nucleation in molten polymers, either with dispersed droplets or with microphase-separated block copolymers. Compared to dilute solutions, melts offer enhanced possibilities for nucleation by fringed micelle structures with stems from different chains. Basal or ``end'' surface energy is estimated for unfolded and folded chain nuclei and employed with classical nucleation theory to distinguish between nucleation rates in the two cases. The effect of chain length on the nucleation barrier offers a way to test model predictions.

  3. Folding and Biogenesis of Mitochondrial Small Tim Proteins

    PubMed Central

    Ceh-Pavia, Efrain; Spiller, Michael P.; Lu, Hui

    2013-01-01

    Correct and timely folding is critical to the function of all proteins. The importance of this is illustrated in the biogenesis of the mitochondrial intermembrane space (IMS) “small Tim” proteins. Biogenesis of the small Tim proteins is regulated by dedicated systems or pathways, beginning with synthesis in the cytosol and ending with assembly of individually folded proteins into functional complexes in the mitochondrial IMS. The process is mostly centered on regulating the redox states of the conserved cysteine residues: oxidative folding is crucial for protein function in the IMS, but oxidized (disulfide bonded) proteins cannot be imported into mitochondria. How the redox-sensitive small Tim precursor proteins are maintained in a reduced, import-competent form in the cytosol is not well understood. Recent studies suggest that zinc and the cytosolic thioredoxin system play a role in the biogenesis of these proteins. In the IMS, the mitochondrial import and assembly (MIA) pathway catalyzes both import into the IMS and oxidative folding of the small Tim proteins. Finally, assembly of the small Tim complexes is a multistep process driven by electrostatic and hydrophobic interactions; however, the chaperone function of the complex might require destabilization of these interactions to accommodate the substrate. Here, we review how folding of the small Tim proteins is regulated during their biogenesis, from maintenance of the unfolded precursors in the cytosol, to their import, oxidative folding, complex assembly and function in the IMS. PMID:23945562

  4. Protein-facilitated ribozyme folding and catalysis.

    PubMed

    Zingler, Nora; Solem, Amanda; Pyle, Anna Marie

    2008-01-01

    In vivo, large RNAs rely on proteins to fold to their native conformation. In the case of the S. cerevisiae group II intron ai5 gamma, the DEAD-box protein Mss116 has been shown to promote the formation of the catalytically active structure. However, it is a matter of debate whether it does this by stabilizing on-pathway intermediates or by disrupting misfolded structures. Here we present the available experimental evidence to distinguish between those mechanisms and discuss the possible interpretations. PMID:18776256

  5. A Simple Model for Protein Folding

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Henry, Eric R.; Eaton, William A.

    We describe a simple Ising-like statistical mechanical model for folding proteins based on the α-carbon contact map of the native structure. In this model residues can adopt two microscopic states corresponding to the native and non-native conformations. In order to exactly enumerate the large number of possible configurations, structure is considered to grow as continuous sequences of native residues, with no more than two sequences in each molecule. Inter-residue contacts can only form within each sequence and between residues of the two native sequences. As structure grows there is a tradeoff between the stabilizing effect of inter-residue contacts and the entropy losses from ordering residues in their native conformation and from forming a disordered loop to connect two continuous sequences. Folding kinetics are calculated from the dynamics on the free energy profile, as in Kramers' reaction rate theory. Although non-native interactions responsible for roughness in the energy landscape are not explicitly considered in the model, they are implicitly included by determining the absolute rates for motion on the free energy profile. With the exception of α-helical proteins, the kinetic progress curves exhibit single exponential time courses, consistent with two state behavior, as observed experimentally. The calculated folding rates are in remarkably good agreement with the measured values for the 25 two-state proteins investigated, with a correlation coefficient of 0.8. With its coarse-grained description of both the energy and entropy, and only three independently adjustable parameters, the model may be regarded as the simplest possible analytical model of protein folding capable of predicting experimental properties of specific proteins.

  6. A Conserved Role for the NAM/miR164 Developmental Module Reveals a Common Mechanism Underlying Carpel Margin Fusion in Monocarpous and Syncarpous Eurosids

    PubMed Central

    Vialette-Guiraud, Aurélie C. M.; Chauvet, Aurélie; Gutierrez-Mazariegos, Juliana; Eschstruth, Alexis; Ratet, Pascal; Scutt, Charles P.

    2016-01-01

    The majority of angiosperms are syncarpous- their gynoecium is composed of two or more fused carpels. In Arabidopsis thaliana, this fusion is regulated through the balance of expression between CUP SHAPED COTYLEDON (CUC) genes, which are orthologs of the Petunia hybrida transcription factor NO APICAL MERISTEM (NAM), and their post-transcriptional regulator miR164. Accordingly, the expression of a miR164-insensitive form of A. thaliana CUC2 causes a radical breakdown of carpel fusion. Here, we investigate the role of the NAM/miR164 genetic module in carpel closure in monocarpous plants. We show that the disruption of this module in monocarpous flowers of A. thaliana aux1-22 mutants causes a failure of carpel closure, similar to the failure of carpel fusion observed in the wild-type genetic background. This observation suggested that closely related mechanisms may bring about carpel closure and carpel fusion, at least in A. thaliana. We therefore tested whether these mechanisms were conserved in a eurosid species that is monocarpous in its wild-type form. We observed that expression of MtNAM, the NAM ortholog in the monocarpous eurosid Medicago truncatula, decreases during carpel margin fusion, suggesting a role for the NAM/miR164 module in this process. We transformed M. truncatula with a miR164-resistant form of MtNAM and observed, among other phenotypes, incomplete carpel closure in the resulting transformants. These data confirm the underlying mechanistic similarity between carpel closure and carpel fusion which we observed in A. thaliana. Our observations suggest that the role of the NAM/miR164 module in the fusion of carpel margins has been conserved at least since the most recent common ancestor of the eurosid clade, and open the possibility that a similar mechanism may have been responsible for carpel closure at much earlier stages of angiosperm evolution. We combine our results with studies of early diverging angiosperms to speculate on the role of the NAM

  7. Two-ligand priming mechanism for potentiated phosphoinositide synthesis is an evolutionarily conserved feature of Sec14-like phosphatidylinositol and phosphatidylcholine exchange proteins.

    PubMed

    Huang, Jin; Ghosh, Ratna; Tripathi, Ashutosh; Lönnfors, Max; Somerharju, Pentti; Bankaitis, Vytas A

    2016-07-15

    Lipid signaling, particularly phosphoinositide signaling, plays a key role in regulating the extreme polarized membrane growth that drives root hair development in plants. The Arabidopsis AtSFH1 gene encodes a two-domain protein with an amino-terminal Sec14-like phosphatidylinositol transfer protein (PITP) domain linked to a carboxy-terminal nodulin domain. AtSfh1 is critical for promoting the spatially highly organized phosphatidylinositol-4,5-bisphosphate signaling program required for establishment and maintenance of polarized root hair growth. Here we demonstrate that, like the yeast Sec14, the AtSfh1 PITP domain requires both its phosphatidylinositol (PtdIns)- and phosphatidylcholine (PtdCho)-binding properties to stimulate PtdIns-4-phosphate [PtdIns(4)P] synthesis. Moreover, we show that both phospholipid-binding activities are essential for AtSfh1 activity in supporting polarized root hair growth. Finally, we report genetic and biochemical evidence that the two-ligand mechanism for potentiation of PtdIns 4-OH kinase activity is a broadly conserved feature of plant Sec14-nodulin proteins, and that this strategy appeared only late in plant evolution. Taken together, the data indicate that the PtdIns/PtdCho-exchange mechanism for stimulated PtdIns(4)P synthesis either arose independently during evolution in yeast and in higher plants, or a suitable genetic module was introduced to higher plants from a fungal source and subsequently exploited by them. PMID:27193303

  8. Antifungal mechanisms of a plant defensin MtDef4 are not conserved between the ascomycete fungi Neurospora crassa and Fusarium graminearum.

    PubMed

    El-Mounadi, Kaoutar; Islam, Kazi T; Hernández-Ortiz, Patricia; Read, Nick D; Shah, Dilip M

    2016-05-01

    Defensins play an important role in plant defense against fungal pathogens. The plant defensin, MtDef4, inhibits growth of the ascomycete fungi, Neurospora crassa and Fusarium graminearum, at micromolar concentrations. We have reported that MtDef4 is transported into the cytoplasm of these fungi and exerts its antifungal activity on intracellular targets. Here, we have investigated whether the antifungal mechanisms of MtDef4 are conserved in these fungi. We show that N. crassa and F. graminearum respond differently to MtDef4 challenge. Membrane permeabilization is required for the antifungal activity of MtDef4 against F. graminearum but not against N. crassa. We find that MtDef4 is targeted to different subcellular compartments in each fungus. Internalization of MtDef4 in N. crassa is energy-dependent and involves endocytosis. By contrast, MtDef4 appears to translocate into F. graminearum autonomously using a partially energy-dependent pathway. MtDef4 has been shown to bind to the phospholipid phosphatidic acid (PA). We provide evidence that the plasma membrane localized phospholipase D, involved in the biosynthesis of PA, is needed for entry of this defensin in N. crassa, but not in F. graminearum. To our knowledge, this is the first example of a defensin which inhibits the growth of two ascomycete fungi via different mechanisms. PMID:26801962

  9. The crystal structure of a partial mouse Notch-1 ankyrin domain: Repeats 4 through 7 preserve an ankyrin fold

    SciTech Connect

    Lubman, Olga Y.; Kopan, Raphael; Waksman, Gabriel; Korolev, Sergey

    2010-07-20

    Folding and stability of proteins containing ankyrin repeats (ARs) is of great interest because they mediate numerous protein-protein interactions involved in a wide range of regulatory cellular processes. Notch, an ankyrin domain containing protein, signals by converting a transcriptional repression complex into an activation complex. The Notch ANK domain is essential for Notch function and contains seven ARs. Here, we present the 2.2 {angstrom} crystal structure of ARs 4-7 from mouse Notch 1 (m1ANK). These C-terminal repeats were resistant to degradation during crystallization, and their secondary and tertiary structures are maintained in the absence of repeats 1-3. The crystallized fragment adopts a typical ankyrin fold including the poorly conserved seventh AR, as seen in the Drosophila Notch ANK domain (dANK). The structural preservation and stability of the C-terminal repeats shed a new light onto the mechanism of hetero-oligomeric assembly during Notch-mediated transcriptional activation.

  10. From Helix–Coil Transitions to Protein Folding

    PubMed Central

    Scheraga, Harold A.

    2009-01-01

    An evolution of procedures to simulate protein structure and folding pathways is described. From an initial focus on the helix–coil transition and on hydrogen-bonding and hydrophobic interactions, our original attempts to determine protein structure and folding pathways were based on an experimental approach. Experiments on the oxidative folding of reduced bovine pancreatic ribonuclease A (RNase A) led to a mechanism by which the molecule folded to the native structure by a minimum of four different pathways. The experiments with RNase A were followed by development of a molecular mechanics approach, first, making use of global optimization procedures and then with molecular dynamics (MD), evolving from an all-atom to a united-residue model. This hierarchical MD approach facilitated probing of the folding trajectory to longer time scales than with all-atom MD, and hence led to the determination of complete folding trajectories, thus far for a protein containing as many as 75 amino acid residues. With increasing refinement of the computational procedures, the computed results are coming closer to experimental observations, providing an understanding as to how physics directs the folding process. PMID:18008324

  11. Cerebral cortex expansion and folding: what have we learned?

    PubMed

    Fernández, Virginia; Llinares-Benadero, Cristina; Borrell, Víctor

    2016-05-17

    One of the most prominent features of the human brain is the fabulous size of the cerebral cortex and its intricate folding. Cortical folding takes place during embryonic development and is important to optimize the functional organization and wiring of the brain, as well as to allow fitting a large cortex in a limited cranial volume. Pathological alterations in size or folding of the human cortex lead to severe intellectual disability and intractable epilepsy. Hence, cortical expansion and folding are viewed as key processes in mammalian brain development and evolution, ultimately leading to increased intellectual performance and, eventually, to the emergence of human cognition. Here, we provide an overview and discuss some of the most significant advances in our understanding of cortical expansion and folding over the last decades. These include discoveries in multiple and diverse disciplines, from cellular and molecular mechanisms regulating cortical development and neurogenesis, genetic mechanisms defining the patterns of cortical folds, the biomechanics of cortical growth and buckling, lessons from human disease, and how genetic evolution steered cortical size and folding during mammalian evolution. PMID:27056680

  12. Plastic folding of buckling structures.

    PubMed

    Colin, Jérôme; Coupeau, Christophe; Grilhé, Jean

    2007-07-27

    Atomic force microscopy observations of the free surface of gold thin films deposited on silicon substrates have evidenced the buckling of the films and the formation of blister patterns undergoing plastic folding. The classical elastic buckling and plastic deformation of the films are analyzed in the framework of the Föppl-Von Kármán theory of thin plates introducing the notion of low-angle tilt boundaries and dislocation distributions to describe this folding effect. It is demonstrated that, in agreement with elementary plasticity of bent crystals, the presence of such tilt-boundaries results in the formation of buckling patterns of lower energy than "classical" elastic blisters. PMID:17678376

  13. Folding and assembly of proteorhodopsin.

    PubMed

    Klyszejko, Adriana L; Shastri, Sarika; Mari, Stefania A; Grubmüller, Helmut; Muller, Daniel J; Glaubitz, Clemens

    2008-02-01

    Proteorhodopsins (PRs), the recently discovered light-driven proton pumps, play a major role in supplying energy for microbial organisms of oceans. In contrast to PR, rhodopsins found in Archaea and Eukarya are structurally well characterized. Using single-molecule microscopy and spectroscopy, we observed the oligomeric assembly of native PR molecules and detected their folding in the membrane. PR showed unfolding patterns identical with those of bacteriorhodopsin and halorhodopsin, indicating that PR folds similarly to archaeal rhodopsins. Surprisingly, PR predominantly assembles into hexameric oligomers, with a smaller fraction assembling into pentamers. Within these oligomers, PR arranged into radial assemblies. We suggest that this structural assembly of PR may have functional implications. PMID:18155728

  14. Evolutionary Strategies for Protein Folding

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Murthy Gopal, Srinivasa; Wenzel, Wolfgang

    2006-03-01

    The free energy approach for predicting the protein tertiary structure describes the native state of a protein as the global minimum of an appropriate free-energy forcefield. The low-energy region of the free-energy landscape of a protein is extremely rugged. Efficient optimization methods must therefore speed up the search for the global optimum by avoiding high energy transition states, adapt large scale moves or accept unphysical intermediates. Here we investigate an evolutionary strategies(ES) for optimizing a protein conformation in our all-atom free-energy force field([1],[2]). A set of random conformations is evolved using an ES to get a diverse population containing low energy structure. The ES is shown to balance energy improvement and yet maintain diversity in structures. The ES is implemented as a master-client model for distributed computing. Starting from random structures and by using this optimization technique, we were able to fold a 20 amino-acid helical protein and 16 amino-acid beta hairpin[3]. We compare ES to basin hopping method. [1]T. Herges and W. Wenzel,Biophys.J. 87,3100(2004) [2] A. Verma and W. Wenzel Stabilization and folding of beta-sheet and alpha-helical proteins in an all-atom free energy model(submitted)(2005) [3] S. M. Gopal and W. Wenzel Evolutionary Strategies for Protein Folding (in preparation)

  15. Ventricular-Fold Dynamics in Human Phonation

    ERIC Educational Resources Information Center

    Bailly, Lucie; Bernardoni, Nathalie Henrich; Müller, Frank; Rohlfs, Anna-Katharina; Hess, Markus

    2014-01-01

    Purpose: In this study, the authors aimed (a) to provide a classification of the ventricular-fold dynamics during voicing, (b) to study the aerodynamic impact of these motions on vocal-fold vibrations, and (c) to assess whether ventricular-fold oscillations could be sustained by aerodynamic coupling with the vocal folds. Method: A 72-sample…

  16. Protein folding in a force clamp

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Cieplak, Marek; Szymczak, P.

    2006-05-01

    Kinetics of folding of a protein held in a force clamp are compared to an unconstrained folding. The comparison is made within a simple topology-based dynamical model of ubiquitin. We demonstrate that the experimentally observed variations in the end-to-end distance reflect microscopic events during folding. However, the folding scenarios in and out of the force clamp are distinct.

  17. Quantifying the similarities within fold space.

    PubMed

    Harrison, Andrew; Pearl, Frances; Mott, Richard; Thornton, Janet; Orengo, Christine

    2002-11-01

    We have used GRATH, a graph-based structure comparison algorithm, to map the similarities between the different folds observed in the CATH domain structure database. Statistical analysis of the distributions of the fold similarities has allowed us to assess the significance for any similarity. Therefore we have examined whether it is best to represent folds as discrete entities or whether, in fact, a more accurate model would be a continuum wherein folds overlap via common motifs. To do this we have introduced a new statistical measure of fold similarity, termed gregariousness. For a particular fold, gregariousness measures how many other folds have a significant structural overlap with that fold, typically comprising 40% or more of the larger structure. Gregarious folds often contain commonly occurring super-secondary structural motifs, such as beta-meanders, greek keys, alpha-beta plait motifs or alpha-hairpins, which are matching similar motifs in other folds. Apart from one example, all the most gregarious folds matching 20% or more of the other folds in the database, are alpha-beta proteins. They also occur in highly populated architectural regions of fold space, adopting sandwich-like arrangements containing two or more layers of alpha-helices and beta-strands.Domains that exhibit a low gregariousness, are those that have very distinctive folds, with few common motifs or motifs that are packed in unusual arrangements. Most of the superhelices exhibit low gregariousness despite containing some commonly occurring super-secondary structural motifs. In these folds, these common motifs are combined in an unusual way and represent a small proportion of the fold (<10%). Our results suggest that fold space may be considered as continuous for some architectural arrangements (e.g. alpha-beta sandwiches), in that super-secondary motifs can be used to link neighbouring fold groups. However, in other regions of fold space much more discrete topologies are observed with

  18. Functional analysis of propeptide as an intramolecular chaperone for in vivo folding of subtilisin nattokinase.

    PubMed

    Jia, Yan; Liu, Hui; Bao, Wei; Weng, Meizhi; Chen, Wei; Cai, Yongjun; Zheng, Zhongliang; Zou, Guolin

    2010-12-01

    Here, we show that during in vivo folding of the precursor, the propeptide of subtilisin nattokinase functions as an intramolecular chaperone (IMC) that organises the in vivo folding of the subtilisin domain. Two residues belonging to β-strands formed by conserved regions of the IMC are crucial for the folding of the subtilisin domain through direct interactions. An identical protease can fold into different conformations in vivo due to the action of a mutated IMC, resulting in different kinetic parameters. Some interfacial changes involving conserved regions, even those induced by the subtilisin domain, blocked subtilisin folding and altered its conformation. Insight into the interaction between the subtilisin and IMC domains is provided by a three-dimensional structural model. PMID:21074529

  19. A Hooke׳s law-based approach to protein folding rate.

    PubMed

    Ruiz-Blanco, Yasser B; Marrero-Ponce, Yovani; Prieto, Pablo J; Salgado, Jesús; García, Yamila; Sotomayor-Torres, Clivia M

    2015-01-01

    Kinetics is a key aspect of the renowned protein folding problem. Here, we propose a comprehensive approach to folding kinetics where a polypeptide chain is assumed to behave as an elastic material described by the Hooke׳s law. A novel parameter called elastic-folding constant results from our model and is suggested to distinguish between protein with two-state and multi-state folding pathways. A contact-free descriptor, named folding degree, is introduced as a suitable structural feature to study protein-folding kinetics. This approach generalizes the observed correlations between varieties of structural descriptors with the folding rate constant. Additionally several comparisons among structural classes and folding mechanisms were carried out showing the good performance of our model with proteins of different types. The present model constitutes a simple rationale for the structural and energetic factors involved in protein folding kinetics. PMID:25245368

  20. Classification of chemical chaperones based on their effect on protein folding landscapes.

    PubMed

    Dandage, Rohan; Bandyopadhyay, Anannya; Jayaraj, Gopal Gunanathan; Saxena, Kanika; Dalal, Vijit; Das, Aritri; Chakraborty, Kausik

    2015-03-20

    Various small molecules present in biological systems can assist protein folding in vitro and are known as chemical chaperones. De novo design of chemical chaperones with higher activity than currently known examples is desirable to ameliorate protein misfolding and aggregation in multiple contexts. However, this development has been hindered by limited knowledge of their activities. It is thought that chemical chaperones are typically poor solvents for a protein backbone and hence facilitate native structure formation. However, it is unknown if different chemical chaperones can act differently to modulate folding energy landscapes. Using a model slow folding protein, double-mutant Maltose-binding protein (DM-MBP), we show that a canonical chemical chaperone, trimethylamine-N-oxide (TMAO), accelerates refolding by decreasing the flexibility of the refolding intermediate (RI). Among a number of small molecules that chaperone DM-MBP folding, proline and serine stabilize the transition state (TS) enthalpically, while trehalose behaves like TMAO and increases the rate of barrier crossing through nonenthalpic processes. We propose a two-group classification of chemical chaperones based upon their thermodynamic effect on RI and TS, which is also supported by single molecule Förster resonance energy transfer (smFRET) studies. Interestingly, for a different test protein, the molecular mechanisms of the two groups of chaperones are not conserved. This provides a glimpse into the complexity of chemical chaperoning activity of osmolytes. Future work would allow us to engineer synergism between the two classes to design more efficient chemical chaperones to ameliorate protein misfolding and aggregation problems. PMID:25493352

  1. Do foliation refraction patterns around buckle folds represent finite strain?

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Frehner, M.; Exner, U.

    2012-04-01

    Buckle folds in the field commonly feature a characteristic syn-deformational foliation, which is sub-parallel to the fold axial plane; hence it is called axial plane foliation. As the foliation is not perfectly parallel to the axial plane, it may exhibit either a divergent or convergent fan around the fold. Convergent fans most commonly occur in the stronger rocks (the folded layer) while divergent fans rather occur in the mechanically weaker rocks (the matrix). The foliation orientation is usually thought to reflect the long axes of the finite strain ellipses, a hypothesis that we investigate in our study. To study the strain distribution around folds, we use the finite-element method to simulate two-dimensional single-layer viscous buckling. The numerical simulations allow to calculate the strain evolution during the folding process and to visualize its distribution and orientation around the fold. We use different measures of strain: (1) the finite strain (recording the strain history from the beginning of the simulation until the end), (2) the infinitesimal strain (capturing only the very last moment of the simulation), (3) the incremental strain (recording the strain history from a certain shortening value during the simulation until the end), and (4) initially layer-orthogonal passive marker lines. The shortening value, from which the incremental strain is calculated, can be anything between the beginning and the end of the simulation. The first three strain measures are tensor fields that are used to calculate and visualize the orientation of the long axis of the strain ellipses around the fold. We find that all strain measures result in a divergent fan in the mechanically weak matrix at the outer arc of the fold and that this divergent fan has almost the same geometry for all strain measures. Also, for the case of the incremental strain, the divergent fan does hardly depend on the moment from which the incremental strain is calculated. This observation

  2. The lifespan extension effects of resveratrol are conserved in the honey bee and may be driven by a mechanism related to caloric restriction

    PubMed Central

    Rascón, Brenda; Hubbard, Basil P.; Sinclair, David A.; Amdam, Gro V.

    2012-01-01

    Our interest in healthy aging and in evolutionarily conserved mechanisms of lifespan extension prompted us to investigate whether features of age-related decline in the honey bee could be attenuated with resveratrol. Resveratrol is regarded as a caloric restriction mimetic known to extend lifespan in some but not all model species. The current, prevailing view is that resveratrol works largely by activating signaling pathways. It has also been suggested that resveratrol may act as an antioxidant and confer protection against nervous system impairment and oxidative stress. To test whether honey bee lifespan, learning performance, and food perception could be altered by resveratrol, we supplemented the diets of honey bees and measured lifespan, olfactory learning, and gustatory responsiveness to sucrose. Furthermore, to test the effects of resveratrol under metabolic challenge, we used hyperoxic environments to generate oxidative stress. Under normal oxygen conditions, two resveratrol treatments—30 and 130 μM—lengthened average lifespan in wild-type honey bees by 38% and 33%, respectively. Both resveratrol treatments also lengthened maximum and median lifespan. In contrast, hyperoxic stress abolished the resveratrol life-extension response. Furthermore, resveratrol did not affect learning performance, but did alter gustation. Honey bees that were not fed resveratrol exhibited greater responsiveness to sugar, while those supplemented with resveratrol were less responsive to sugar. We also discovered that individuals fed a high dose of resveratrol—compared to controls—ingested fewer quantities of food under ad libitum feeding conditions. PMID:22868943

  3. Iodothyronine deiodinase gene analysis of the Pacific oyster Crassostrea gigas reveals possible conservation of thyroid hormone feedback regulation mechanism in mollusks

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Huang, Wen; Xu, Fei; Qu, Tao; Li, Li; Que, Huayong; Zhang, Guofan

    2015-07-01

    Iodothyronine deiodinase catalyzes the initiation and termination of thyroid hormones (THs) effects, and plays a central role in the regulation of thyroid hormone level in vertebrates. In non-chordate invertebrates, only one deiodinase has been identified in the scallop Chlamys farreri. Here, two deiodinases were cloned in the Pacific oyster Crassostrea gigas ( CgDx and CgDy). The characteristic in-frame TGA codons and selenocysteine insertion sequence elements in the oyster deiodinase cDNAs supported the activity of them. Furthermore, seven orthologs of deiodinases were found by a tblastn search in the mollusk Lottia gigantea and the annelid Capitella teleta. A phylogenetic analysis revealed that the deiodinase gene originated from an common ancestor and a clade-specific gene duplication occurred independently during the differentiation of the mollusk, annelid, and vertebrate lineages. The distinct spatiotemporal expression patterns implied functional divergence of the two deiodinases. The expression of CgDx and CgDy was influenced by L-thyroxine T4, and putative thyroid hormone responsive elements were found in their promoters, which suggested that the oyster deiodinases were feedback regulated by TH. Epinephrine stimulated the expression level of CgDx and CgDy, suggesting an interaction effect between different hormones. This study provides the first evidence for the existence of a conserved TH feedback regulation mechanism in mollusks, providing insights into TH evolution.

  4. Drosophila Homologues of Adenomatous Polyposis Coli (APC) and the Formin Diaphanous Collaborate by a Conserved Mechanism to Stimulate Actin Filament Assembly*

    PubMed Central

    Jaiswal, Richa; Stepanik, Vince; Rankova, Aneliya; Molinar, Olivia; Goode, Bruce L.; McCartney, Brooke M.

    2013-01-01

    Adenomatous polyposis coli (APC) is a large multidomain protein that regulates the cytoskeleton. Recently, it was shown that vertebrate APC through its Basic domain directly collaborates with the formin mDia1 to stimulate actin filament assembly in the presence of nucleation barriers. However, it has been unclear whether these activities extend to homologues of APC and Dia in other organisms. Drosophila APC and Dia are each required to promote actin furrow formation in the syncytial embryo, suggesting a potential collaboration in actin assembly, but low sequence homology between the Basic domains of Drosophila and vertebrate APC has left their functional and mechanistic parallels uncertain. To address this question, we purified Drosophila APC1 and Dia and determined their individual and combined effects on actin assembly using both bulk fluorescence assays and total internal reflection fluorescence microscopy. Our data show that APC1, similar to its vertebrate homologue, bound to actin monomers and nucleated and bundled filaments. Further, Drosophila Dia nucleated actin assembly and protected growing filament barbed ends from capping protein. Drosophila APC1 and Dia directly interacted and collaborated to promote actin assembly in the combined presence of profilin and capping protein. Thus, despite limited sequence homology, Drosophila and vertebrate APCs exhibit highly related activities and mechanisms and directly collaborate with formins. These results suggest that APC-Dia interactions in actin assembly are conserved and may underlie important in vivo functions in a broad range of animal phyla. PMID:23558679

  5. Conserved Epigenetic Mechanisms Could Play a Key Role in Regulation of Photosynthesis and Development-Related Genes during Needle Development of Pinus radiata

    PubMed Central

    Meijón, Mónica; Escandón, Mónica; Cañal, María Jesús

    2015-01-01

    Needle maturation is a complex process that involves cell growth, differentiation and tissue remodelling towards the acquisition of full physiological competence. Leaf induction mechanisms are well known; however, those underlying the acquisition of physiological competence are still poorly understood, especially in conifers. We studied the specific epigenetic regulation of genes defining organ function (PrRBCS and PrRBCA) and competence and stress response (PrCSDP2 and PrSHMT4) during three stages of needle development and one de-differentiated control. Gene-specific changes in DNA methylation and histone were analysed by bisulfite sequencing and chromatin immunoprecipitation (ChIP). The expression of PrRBCA and PrRBCS increased during needle maturation and was associated with the progressive loss of H3K9me3, H3K27me3 and the increase in AcH4. The maturation-related silencing of PrSHMT4 was correlated with increased H3K9me3 levels, and the repression of PrCSDP2, to the interplay between AcH4, H3K27me3, H3K9me3 and specific DNA methylation. The employ of HAT and HDAC inhibitors led to a further determination of the role of histone acetylation in the regulation of our target genes. The integration of these results with high-throughput analyses in Arabidopsis thaliana and Populus trichocarpa suggests that the specific epigenetic mechanisms that regulate photosynthetic genes are conserved between the analysed species. PMID:25965766

  6. Conservation Presentation.

    ERIC Educational Resources Information Center

    Friday, Gerald

    2001-01-01

    Introduces a project in which students teach about the importance of recycling and conservation by presenting demonstrations. Includes demonstrations on water, plastic, and other recycling products such as steel. (YDS)

  7. Folded MEMS approach to NMRG

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Gundeti, Venu Madhav

    Atomic gyroscopes have a potential for good performance advantages and several attempts are being made to miniaturize them. This thesis describes the efforts made in implementing a Folded MEMS based NMRG. The micro implementations of all the essential components for NMRG (Nuclear Magnetic Resonance Gyroscope) are described in detail in regards to their design, fabrication, and characterization. A set of micro-scale Helmholtz coils are described and the homogeneity of the generated magnetic field is analyzed for different designs of heaters. The dielectric mirrors and metallic mirrors are compared in terms of reflectivity and polarization change up on reflection. A pyramid shaped folded backbone structure is designed, fabricated, and assembled along with all the required components. A novel double-folded structure 1/4th the size of original version is fabricated and assembled. Design and modeling details of a 5 layered shield with shielding factor > 106 and total volume of around 90 cc are also presented. A table top setup for characterization of atomic vapor cell is described in detail. A micro vapor cell based Rb magnetometer with a sensitivity of 108 pT/√Hz is demonstrated. The challenges due to DC heating are addressed and mitigated using an AC heater. Several experiments related to measuring the relaxation time of Xe are provided along with results. For Xe131, relaxation times of T1 = 23.78 sec, T2 = 18.06 sec and for Xe129, T1 = 21.65 sec and T2 = 20.45 sec are reported.

  8. Robustness of downhill folding: guidelines for the analysis of equilibrium folding experiments on small proteins.

    PubMed

    Naganathan, Athi N; Perez-Jimenez, Raúl; Sanchez-Ruiz, Jose M; Muñoz, Victor

    2005-05-24

    Previously, we identified the protein BBL as a downhill folder. This conclusion was based on the statistical mechanical analysis of equilibrium experiments performed in two variants of BBL, one with a fluorescent label at the N-terminus, and another one labeled at both ends. A recent report has claimed that our results are an artifact of label-induced aggregation and that BBL with no fluorescent labels and a longer N-terminal tail folds in a two-state fashion. Here, we show that singly and doubly labeled BBL do not aggregate, unfold reversibly, and have the same thermodynamic properties when studied under appropriate experimental conditions (e.g., our original conditions (1)). With an elementary analysis of the available data on the nonlabeled BBL (2), we also show that this slightly more stable BBL variant is not a two-state folder. We discuss the problems that led to its previous misclassification and how they can be avoided. Finally, we investigate the equilibrium unfolding of the singly labeled BBL with both ends protected by acetylation and amidation. This variant has the same thermodynamic stability of the nonlabeled BBL and displays all the equilibrium signatures of downhill folding. From all these observations, we conclude that fluorescent labels do not perturb the thermodynamic properties of BBL, which consistently folds downhill regardless of its stability and specific protein tails. The work on BBL illustrates the shortcomings of applying conventional procedures intended to distinguish between two-state and three-state folding models to small fast-folding proteins. PMID:15895987

  9. Paradoxic vocal fold movement disorder.

    PubMed

    Matrka, Laura

    2014-02-01

    Paradoxical Vocal Fold Movement Disorder (PVFMD) is a cause of dyspnea that can mimic or occur alongside asthma or other pulmonary disease. Treatment with Laryngeal Control Therapy is very effective once the entity is properly diagnosed and contributing comorbidities are managed appropriately. In understanding the etiology of PVFMD, focus has broadened beyond psychiatric factors alone to include the spectrum of laryngeal irritants (laryngopharyngeal reflux, allergic and sinus disease, sicca, and possibly obstructive sleep apnea). The following is a discussion of the history, terminology, epidemiology, diagnosis, comorbid conditions, and treatment of this entity. PMID:24286687

  10. Hydrodynamic interactions in protein folding

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Cieplak, Marek; Niewieczerzał, Szymon

    2009-03-01

    We incorporate hydrodynamic interactions (HIs) in a coarse-grained and structure-based model of proteins by employing the Rotne-Prager hydrodynamic tensor. We study several small proteins and demonstrate that HIs facilitate folding. We also study HIV-1 protease and show that HIs make the flap closing dynamics faster. The HIs are found to affect time correlation functions in the vicinity of the native state even though they have no impact on same time characteristics of the structure fluctuations around the native state.

  11. Hydrodynamic interactions in protein folding.

    PubMed

    Cieplak, Marek; Niewieczerzał, Szymon

    2009-03-28

    We incorporate hydrodynamic interactions (HIs) in a coarse-grained and structure-based model of proteins by employing the Rotne-Prager hydrodynamic tensor. We study several small proteins and demonstrate that HIs facilitate folding. We also study HIV-1 protease and show that HIs make the flap closing dynamics faster. The HIs are found to affect time correlation functions in the vicinity of the native state even though they have no impact on same time characteristics of the structure fluctuations around the native state. PMID:19334888

  12. Hydrogen Bonds in Polymer Folding

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Borg, Jesper; Jensen, Mogens H.; Sneppen, Kim; Tiana, Guido

    2001-02-01

    We studied the thermodynamics of a homopolymeric chain with both van der Waals and directed hydrogen bond interaction. The effect of hydrogen bonds is to reduce dramatically the entropy of low-lying states and to give rise to long-range order and to conformations displaying secondary structures. For compact polymers a transition is found between helix-rich states and low-entropy sheet-dominated states. The consequences of this transition for protein folding and, in particular, for the problem of prions are discussed.

  13. Improving protein fold recognition by random forest

    PubMed Central

    2014-01-01

    Background Recognizing the correct structural fold among known template protein structures for a target protein (i.e. fold recognition) is essential for template-based protein structure modeling. Since the fold recognition problem can be defined as a binary classification problem of predicting whether or not the unknown fold of a target protein is similar to an already known template protein structure in a library, machine learning methods have been effectively applied to tackle this problem. In our work, we developed RF-Fold that uses random forest - one of the most powerful and scalable machine learning classification methods - to recognize protein folds. Results RF-Fold consists of hundreds of decision trees that can be trained efficiently on very large datasets to make accurate predictions on a highly imbalanced dataset. We evaluated RF-Fold on the standard Lindahl's benchmark dataset comprised of 976 × 975 target-template protein pairs through cross-validation. Compared with 17 different fold recognition methods, the performance of RF-Fold is generally comparable to the best performance in fold recognition of different difficulty ranging from the easiest family level, the medium-hard superfamily level, and to the hardest fold level. Based on the top-one template protein ranked by RF-Fold, the correct recognition rate is 84.5%, 63.4%, and 40.8% at family, superfamily, and fold levels, respectively. Based on the top-five template protein folds ranked by RF-Fold, the correct recognition rate increases to 91.5%, 79.3% and 58.3% at family, superfamily, and fold levels. Conclusions The good performance achieved by the RF-Fold demonstrates the random forest's effectiveness for protein fold recognition. PMID:25350499

  14. Single-molecule spectroscopy of protein folding in a chaperonin cage

    PubMed Central

    Hofmann, Hagen; Hillger, Frank; Pfeil, Shawn H.; Hoffmann, Armin; Streich, Daniel; Haenni, Dominik; Nettels, Daniel; Lipman, Everett A.; Schuler, Benjamin

    2010-01-01

    Molecular chaperones are known to be essential for avoiding protein aggregation in vivo, but it is still unclear how they affect protein folding mechanisms. We use single-molecule Förster resonance energy transfer to follow the folding of a protein inside the GroEL/GroES chaperonin cavity over a time range from milliseconds to hours. Our results show that confinement in the chaperonin decelerates the folding of the C-terminal domain in the substrate protein rhodanese, but leaves the folding rate of the N-terminal domain unaffected. Microfluidic mixing experiments indicate that strong interactions of the substrate with the cavity walls impede the folding process, but the folding hierarchy is preserved. Our results imply that no universal chaperonin mechanism exists. Rather, a competition between intra- and intermolecular interactions determines the folding rates and mechanisms of a substrate inside the GroEL/GroES cage. PMID:20547872

  15. Programmed folding of DNA origami structures through single-molecule force control.

    PubMed

    Bae, Wooli; Kim, Kipom; Min, Duyoung; Ryu, Je-Kyung; Hyeon, Changbong; Yoon, Tae-Young

    2014-01-01

    Despite the recent development in the design of DNA origami, its folding yet relies on thermal or chemical annealing methods. We here demonstrate mechanical folding of the DNA origami structure via a pathway that has not been accessible to thermal annealing. Using magnetic tweezers, we stretch a single scaffold DNA with mechanical tension to remove its secondary structures, followed by base pairing of the stretched DNA with staple strands. When the force is subsequently quenched, folding of the DNA nanostructure is completed through displacement between the bound staple strands. Each process in the mechanical folding is well defined and free from kinetic traps, enabling us to complete folding within 10 min. We also demonstrate parallel folding of DNA nanostructures through multiplexed manipulation of the scaffold DNAs. Our results suggest a path towards programmability of the folding pathway of DNA nanostructures. PMID:25469474

  16. Metal ion coupled protein folding and allosteric motions

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Wang, Wei

    2014-03-01

    Many proteins need the help of cofactors for their successful folding and functioning. Metal ions, i.e., Zn2+, Ca2+, and Mg2+ etc., are typical biological cofactors. Binding of metal ions can reshape the energy landscapes of proteins, thereby modifying the folding and allosteric motions. For example, such binding may make the intrinsically disordered proteins have funneled energy landscapes, consequently, ensures their spontaneous folding. In addition, the binding may activate certain biological processes by inducing related conformational changes of regulation proteins. However, how the local interactions involving the metal ion binding can induce the global conformational motions of proteins remains elusive. Investigating such question requires multiple models with different details, including quantum mechanics, atomistic models, and coarse grained models. In our recent work, we have been developing such multiscale methods which can reasonably model the metal ion binding induced charge transfer, protonation/deprotonation, and large conformational motions of proteins. With such multiscale model, we elucidated the zinc-binding induced folding mechanism of classical zinc finger and the calcium-binding induced dynamic symmetry breaking in the allosteric motions of calmodulin. In addition, we studied the coupling of folding, calcium binding and allosteric motions of calmodulin domains. In this talk, I will introduce the above progresses on the metal ion coupled protein folding and allosteric motions. We thank the finacial support from NSFC and the 973 project.

  17. Open Fissure Folds record coseismic loading and postseismic stress relaxation

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Nüchter, Jens-Alexander

    2015-03-01

    Open Fissure Folds hosted by high pressure/low temperature metamorphic rocks of south Evia (Greece) are introduced, their structural and microstructural record is analysed, and a mechanical model is proposed. Open Fissure Folds are preserved as at least two parallel folded quartz-feldspar veins separated by narrow buckled rock columns. The veins originated as tensile cracks that propagated in the middle crust driven by high differential stress. Features diagnostic for Open Fissure Folds indicate that the rock columns represented the layers of high viscosity, and not the veins as consistently reported in many previous studies on folded veins. This record is taken to indicate that buckling of the rock columns initiated after arrest of the fractures and terminated prior to complete vein sealing. Accordingly, mechanical decoupling by open fissures allowed for buckling of the rock columns in response to episodic creep of the host rocks according to stress relaxation, as expected for postseismic deformation in the earthquake cycle. I propose that the parental fractures propagated in response to quasi-instantaneous coseismic loading of the middle crust. Buckling was attributed to transient postseismic creep and stress relaxation. Complete sealing of the veins occurred when stresses were largely relaxed. Each Open Fissure Fold records the stress and strain history of a single earthquake.

  18. Learning Protein Folding Energy Functions

    PubMed Central

    Guan, Wei; Ozakin, Arkadas; Gray, Alexander; Borreguero, Jose; Pandit, Shashi; Jagielska, Anna; Wroblewska, Liliana; Skolnick, Jeffrey

    2014-01-01

    A critical open problem in ab initio protein folding is protein energy function design, which pertains to defining the energy of protein conformations in a way that makes folding most efficient and reliable. In this paper, we address this issue as a weight optimization problem and utilize a machine learning approach, learning-to-rank, to solve this problem. We investigate the ranking-via-classification approach, especially the RankingSVM method and compare it with the state-of-the-art approach to the problem using the MINUIT optimization package. To maintain the physicality of the results, we impose non-negativity constraints on the weights. For this we develop two efficient non-negative support vector machine (NNSVM) methods, derived from L2-norm SVM and L1-norm SVMs, respectively. We demonstrate an energy function which maintains the correct ordering with respect to structure dissimilarity to the native state more often, is more efficient and reliable for learning on large protein sets, and is qualitatively superior to the current state-of-the-art energy function. PMID:25311546

  19. Five-fold twin formation during annealing of nanocrystalline Cu

    SciTech Connect

    Bringa, E M; Farkas, D; Caro, A; Wang, Y M; McNaney, J; Smith, R

    2009-05-20

    Contrary to the common belief that many-fold twins, or star twins, in nanophase materials are due to the action of significant external stresses, we report molecular dynamics simulations of annealing in 5 nm grain size samples annealed at 800 K for nearly 0.5 nsec at 0 external pressure showing the formation of five-fold star twins during annealing under the action of the large internal stresses responsible for grain growth and microstructural evolution. The structure of the many-fold twins is remarkably similar to those we have found to occur under uniaxial shock loading, of samples of nanocrystalline NiW with a grain size of {approx}5-30 nm. The mechanism of formation of the many-fold twins is discussed in the light of the simulations and experiments.

  20. Vocal fold vibrations at high soprano fundamental frequencies.

    PubMed

    Echternach, Matthias; Döllinger, Michael; Sundberg, Johan; Traser, Louisa; Richter, Bernhard

    2013-02-01

    Human voice production at very high fundamental frequencies is not yet understood in detail. It was hypothesized that these frequencies are produced by turbulences, vocal tract/vocal fold interactions, or vocal fold oscillations without closure. Hitherto it has been impossible to visually analyze the vocal mechanism due to technical limitations. Latest high-speed technology, which captures 20,000 frames/s, using transnasal endoscopy was applied. Up to 1568 Hz human vocal folds do exhibit oscillations with complete closure. Therefore, the recent results suggest that human voice production at very high F0s up to 1568 Hz is not caused by turbulence, but rather by airflow modulation from vocal fold oscillations. PMID:23363198

  1. Kinematics and thermodynamics of a folding heteropolymer.

    PubMed Central

    Fukugita, M; Lancaster, D; Mitchard, M G

    1993-01-01

    In order to elucidate the folding dynamics of protein, we have carried out numerical simulations of a heteropolymer model of self-interacting random chains. We find that folding propensity depends strongly on sequence and that both folding and nonfolding sequences exist. Furthermore we show that folding is a two-step process: the transition from coil state to unique folded state takes place through a globule phase. In addition to the continuous coil-globule transition, there exists an abrupt transition that separates the unique folded state from the globule state and ensures the stability of the native state. PMID:8327518

  2. Fungal infections of the folds (intertriginous areas).

    PubMed

    Metin, Ahmet; Dilek, Nursel; Demirseven, Duriye Deniz

    2015-01-01

    Superficial fungal infections are widespread, regardless of age and gender, in populations all around the world and may affect the skin and skin appendages. Although there are thousands of fungal infections from various genera and families in nature, those that are pathogenic for humans and nesting in skin folds are limited in number. The prevalence and distribution of these fungi vary according to the patients and certain environmental factors. Because the areas including the lids, external auditory canal, behind the ears, navel, inguinal region, and axillae, also called flexures, are underventilated and moist areas exposed to friction, they are especially sensitive to fungal infections. Fungi can both directly invade the skin, leading to infections, and indirectly stimulate immune mechanisms due to tissue interaction and their antigenic character and contribute to the development or exacerbation of secondary bacterial infections, seborrheic dermatitis, atopic dermatitis, and psoriasis. Superficial fungal infections can be classified and studied as dermatophyte infections, candidal infections, Malassezia infections, and other superficial infections independently from the involved skin fold areas. PMID:26051058

  3. Ring-Cleaving Dioxygenases with a Cupin Fold

    PubMed Central

    2012-01-01

    Ring-cleaving dioxygenases catalyze key reactions in the aerobic microbial degradation of aromatic compounds. Many pathways converge to catecholic intermediates, which are subject to ortho or meta cleavage by intradiol or extradiol dioxygenases, respectively. However, a number of degradation pathways proceed via noncatecholic hydroxy-substituted aromatic carboxylic acids like gentisate, salicylate, 1-hydroxy-2-naphthoate, or aminohydroxybenzoates. The ring-cleaving dioxygenases active toward these compounds belong to the cupin superfamily, which is characterized by a six-stranded β-barrel fold and conserved amino acid motifs that provide the 3His or 2- or 3His-1Glu ligand environment of a divalent metal ion. Most cupin-type ring cleavage dioxygenases use an FeII center for catalysis, and the proposed mechanism is very similar to that of the canonical (type I) extradiol dioxygenases. The metal ion is presumed to act as an electron conduit for single electron transfer from the metal-bound substrate anion to O2, resulting in activation of both substrates to radical species. The family of cupin-type dioxygenases also involves quercetinase (flavonol 2,4-dioxygenase), which opens up two C-C bonds of the heterocyclic ring of quercetin, a wide-spread plant flavonol. Remarkably, bacterial quercetinases are capable of using different divalent metal ions for catalysis, suggesting that the redox properties of the metal are relatively unimportant for the catalytic reaction. The major role of the active-site metal ion could be to correctly position the substrate and to stabilize transition states and intermediates rather than to mediate electron transfer. The tentative hypothesis that quercetinase catalysis involves direct electron transfer from metal-bound flavonolate to O2 is supported by model chemistry. PMID:22287012

  4. Widespread signatures of local mRNA folding structure selection in four Dengue virus serotypes

    PubMed Central

    2015-01-01

    Background It is known that mRNA folding can affect and regulate various gene expression steps both in living organisms and in viruses. Previous studies have recognized functional RNA structures in the genome of the Dengue virus. However, these studies usually focused either on the viral untranslated regions or on very specific and limited regions at the beginning of the coding sequences, in a limited number of strains, and without considering evolutionary selection. Results Here we performed the first large scale comprehensive genomics analysis of selection for local mRNA folding strength in the Dengue virus coding sequences, based on a total of 1,670 genomes and 4 serotypes. Our analysis identified clusters of positions along the coding regions that may undergo a conserved evolutionary selection for strong or weak local folding maintained across different viral variants. Specifically, 53-66 clusters for strong folding and 49-73 clusters for weak folding (depending on serotype) aggregated of positions with a significant conservation of folding energy signals (related to partially overlapping local genomic regions) were recognized. In addition, up to 7% of these positions were found to be conserved in more than 90% of the viral genomes. Although some of the identified positions undergo frequent synonymous / non-synonymous substitutions, the selection for folding strength therein is preserved, and thus cannot be trivially explained based on sequence conservation alone. Conclusions The fact that many of the positions with significant folding related signals are conserved among different Dengue variants suggests that a better understanding of the mRNA structures in the corresponding regions may promote the development of prospective anti- Dengue vaccination strategies. The comparative genomics approach described here can be employed in the future for detecting functional regions in other pathogens with very high mutations rates. PMID:26449467

  5. The mechanism of gamma-secretase activities through high molecular weight complex formation of presenilins is conserved in Drosophila melanogaster and mammals.

    PubMed

    Takasugi, Nobumasa; Takahashi, Yasuko; Morohashi, Yuichi; Tomita, Taisuke; Iwatsubo, Takeshi

    2002-12-20

    Mutations in presenilin 1 (PS1) and PS2 genes contribute to the pathogenesis of early onset familial Alzheimer's disease by increasing secretion of the pathologically relevant Abeta42 polypeptides. PS genes are also implicated in Notch signaling through proteolytic processing of the Notch receptor in Caenorhabditis elegans, Drosophila melanogaster, and mammals. Here we show that Drosophila PS (Psn) protein undergoes endoproteolytic cleavage and forms a stable high molecular weight (HMW) complex in Drosophila S2 or mouse neuro2a (N2a) cells in a similar manner to mammalian PS. The loss-of-function recessive point mutations located in the C-terminal region of Psn, that cause an early pupal-lethal phenotype resembling Notch mutant in vivo, disrupted the HMW complex formation, and abolished gamma-secretase activities in cultured cells. The overexpression of Psn in mouse embryonic fibroblasts lacking PS1 and PS2 genes rescued the Notch processing. Moreover, disruption of the expression of Psn by double-stranded RNA-mediated interference completely abolished the gamma-secretase activity in S2 cells. Surprisingly, gamma-secretase activity dependent on wild-type Psn was associated with a drastic overproduction of Abeta1-42 from human betaAPP in N2a cells, but not in S2 cells. Our data suggest that the mechanism of gamma-secretase activities through formation of HMW PS complex, as well as its abolition by loss-of-function mutations located in the C terminus, are highly conserved features in Drosophila and mammals. PMID:12388554

  6. Protein folding in a force-clamp

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Cieplak, Marek; Szymczak, Piotr

    2006-03-01

    Kinetics of folding of a protein held in a force-clamp are compared to an unconstrained folding. The comparison is made within a simple topology-based dynamical model of ubiquitin. We demonstrate that the experimentally observed rapid changes in the end-to-end distance mirror microscopic events during folding. However, the folding scenarios in and out of the force-clamp are distinct.

  7. Molecular mechanism of the enterococcal aminoglycoside 6'-N-acetyltransferase': role of GNAT-conserved residues in the chemistry of antibiotic inactivation.

    PubMed

    Draker, Kari-ann; Wright, Gerard D

    2004-01-20

    The Gram-positive pathogen Enterococcus faecium is intrinsically resistant to aminoglycoside antibiotics due to the presence of a chromosomally encoded aminoglycoside 6'-N-acetyltransferase [AAC(6')-Ii]. This enzyme is a member of the GCN5-related N-acetyltransferase (GNAT) superfamily and is therefore structurally homologous to proteins that catalyze acetyl transfer to diverse acyl-accepting substrates. This study reports the investigation of several potential catalytic residues that are present in the AAC(6')-Ii active site and also conserved in many GNAT enzymes. Site-directed mutagenesis of Glu72, His74, Leu76, and Tyr147 with characterization of the purified site mutants gave valuable information about the roles of these amino acids in acetyl transfer chemistry. More specifically, steady-state kinetic analysis of protein activity, solvent viscosity effects, pH studies, and antibiotic resistance profiles were all used to assess the roles of Glu72 and His74 as potential active site bases, Tyr147 as a general acid, and the importance of the amide NH group of Leu76 in transition-state stabilization. Taken together, our results indicate that Glu72 is not involved in general base catalysis, but is instead critical for the proper positioning and orientation of aminoglycoside substrates in the active site. Similarly, His74 is also not acting as the active site base, with pH studies revealing that this residue must be protonated for optimal AAC(6')-Ii activity. Mutation of Tyr147 was found not to affect the chemical step of catalysis, and our results were not consistent with this residue acting as a general acid. Last, the amide NH group of Leu76 is implicated in important interactions with acetyl-CoA and transition-state stabilization. In summary, the work described here provides important information regarding the molecular mechanism of AAC(6')-Ii catalysis that allows us to contrast our findings with those of other GNAT proteins and to demonstrate that these enzymes

  8. Towards a geomechanics classification of folded layered rock masses

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Agliardi, Federico; Zanchi, Andrea; Bianchi, Federico; Crosta, Giovanni B.

    2016-04-01

    Several schemes have been proposed in the last decades to account for the effects of structure and alteration of rock masses on their geo-mechanical properties. Among these, the Geological Strength Index (GSI) turned out as the most effective to account for complex geological conditions, including heavily fractured, heterogeneous (e.g. flysch-like) or tectonically disturbed rock masses. It is well known that folding has a direct impact on the type and degree of fracturing. Nevertheless, no classification scheme has been developed to introduce explicitly the effects of folding and associated fracturing on rock mass strength and deformability. In this perspective, we carried out an exploratory study aimed at establishing relationships between outcrop-scale folding and GSI in layered carbonate rock masses, exceptionally well exposed in a quarry near Bergamo (Lombardia, Southern Alps). A N-S trending, 350m long and 115m high benched rock face exposes a complete cross section of a sub-horizontal inclined fold involving Lower Jurassic cherty mudstones (Moltrasio Lms.) and marly limestones successions (Domaro Lms.). The main fold has an axial surface moderately dipping to the north and is characterised by polyharmonic folds at scales of metres to tens of metres. The site was documented by producing a digital outcrop through a high-resolution terrestrial photogrammetric survey from distances ranging from 70 to 130 m (18 camera stations, 395 pictures), using RTK GNSS measurements for camera station geo-referencing. Data processing by Structure-from-Motion (SfM) techniques resulted in detailed point clouds covering the entire slope with a cm-scale accuracy. In order to establish relationships between lithology, folding styles, and geomechanical properties of folded rock masses we performed a detailed structural analysis at 25 survey stations spread over all the different fold sectors. These surveys include: lithology, bedding attitude and thickness, brittle structures (e

  9. Folded Symplectic Toric Four-Manifolds

    ERIC Educational Resources Information Center

    Lee, Christopher R.

    2009-01-01

    A folded symplectic form on an even-dimensional manifold is a closed two-form that degenerates in a suitably controlled way along a smooth hypersurface. When a torus having half the dimension of the manifold acts in a way preserving the folded symplectic form and admitting a moment map, the manifold is called a folded symplectic toric manifold.…

  10. Dynamics of Folds in the Plane

    ERIC Educational Resources Information Center

    Krylov, Nikolai A.; Rogers, Edwin L.

    2011-01-01

    Take a strip of paper and fold a crease intersecting the long edges, creating two angles. Choose one edge and consider the angle with the crease. Fold the opposite edge along the crease, creating a new crease that bisects the angle. Fold again, this time using the newly created crease and the initial edge, creating a new angle along the chosen…

  11. Work done by titin protein folding assists muscle contraction

    PubMed Central

    Popa, Ionel; Kosuri, Pallav; Linke, Wolfgang A.; Fernández, Julio M.

    2016-01-01

    Current theories of muscle contraction propose that the power stroke of a myosin motor is the sole source of mechanical energy driving the sliding filaments of a contracting muscle. These models exclude titin, the largest protein in the human body, which determines the passive elasticity of muscles. Here, we show that stepwise unfolding/folding of titin Ig domains occurs in the elastic I band region of intact myofibrils at physiological sarcomere lengths and forces of 6-8 pN. We use single molecule techniques to demonstrate that unfolded titin Ig domains undergo a spontaneous stepwise folding contraction at forces below 10 pN, delivering up to 105 zJ of additional contractile energy, which is larger than the mechanical energy delivered by the power stroke of a myosin motor. Thus, it appears inescapable that folding of titin Ig domains is an important, but so far unrecognized contributor to the force generated by a contracting muscle. PMID:26854230

  12. Protein Elongation, Co-translational Folding and Targeting.

    PubMed

    Rodnina, Marina V; Wintermeyer, Wolfgang

    2016-05-22

    The elongation phase of protein synthesis defines the overall speed and fidelity of protein synthesis and affects protein folding and targeting. The mechanisms of reactions taking place during translation elongation remain important questions in understanding ribosome function. The ribosome-guided by signals in the mRNA-can recode the genetic information, resulting in alternative protein products. Co-translational protein folding and interaction of ribosomes and emerging polypeptides with associated protein biogenesis factors determine the quality and localization of proteins. In this review, we summarize recent findings on mechanisms of translation elongation in bacteria, including decoding and recoding, peptide bond formation, tRNA-mRNA translocation, co-translational protein folding, interaction with protein biogenesis factors and targeting of ribosomes synthesizing membrane proteins to the plasma membrane. The data provide insights into how the ribosome shapes composition and quality of the cellular proteome. PMID:27038507

  13. Marketing Conservation.

    ERIC Educational Resources Information Center

    Ellis, William B.

    1987-01-01

    In 1986, Northeast Utilities began helping shool administrators combat school building energy wastage through a program called Energy Alliance. The typical school can reduce its energy bill by 30 percent by adopting a wide range of conservation measures, including cogeneration, relamping, and energy audits. (MLH)

  14. Colorful Conservation

    ERIC Educational Resources Information Center

    Skophammer, Karen

    2011-01-01

    Some people only think about conservation on Earth Day. Being in the "art business" however, this author is always conscious of the many products she thinks get wasted when they could be reused, recycled, and restored--especially in a school building and art room. In this article, she describes an art lesson that allows students to paint…

  15. [Conservation Units.

    ERIC Educational Resources Information Center

    Texas Education Agency, Austin.

    Instructional units deal with each aspect of conservation: forests, wildlife, rangelands, water, minerals, and soil. The area of the secondary school curriculum with which each is correlated is indicated. Lists of general and specific objectives are followed by suggested teaching procedures, including ideas for introducing the topic, questions to…

  16. [Conservation Units.

    ERIC Educational Resources Information Center

    Texas Education Agency, Austin.

    Each of the six instructional units deals with one aspect of conservation: forests, water, rangeland, minerals (petroleum), and soil. The area of the elementary school curriculum with which each correlates is indicated. Lists of general and specific objectives are followed by suggested teaching procedures, including ideas for introducing the…

  17. Modulating lipid dynamics and membrane fluidity to drive rapid folding of a transmembrane barrel

    PubMed Central

    Maurya, Svetlana Rajkumar; Chaturvedi, Deepti; Mahalakshmi, Radhakrishnan

    2013-01-01

    Lipid-protein interactions, critical for the folding, stability and function of membrane proteins, can be both of mechanical and chemical nature. Mechanical properties of lipid systems can be suitably influenced by physical factors so as to facilitate membrane protein folding. We demonstrate here that by modulating lipid dynamics transiently using heat, rapid folding of two 8-stranded transmembrane β-barrel proteins OmpX and OmpA1–171, in micelles and vesicles, can be achieved within seconds. Folding kinetics using this ‘heat shock’ method shows a dramatic ten to several hundred folds increase in refolding rate along with ~100% folding efficiency. We establish that OmpX thus folded is highly thermostable even in detergent micelles, and retains structural characteristics comparable to the protein in bilayers. PMID:23771099

  18. Structural and Molecular Basis for the Novel Catalytic Mechanism and Evolution of DddP, an Abundant Peptidase-Like Bacterial Dimethylsulfoniopropionate Lyase: A New Enzyme from an Old Fold

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Zhang, Y. Z.; Wang, P.; Chen, X. L.; Li, C. Y.; Gao, X.; Zhu, D.; Xie, B. B.; Qin, Q. L.; Zhang, X. Y.; Su, H. N.; Zhou, B. C.; Xun, L.

    2015-12-01

    The microbial cleavage of dimethylsulfoniopropionate (DMSP) generates volatile dimethyl sulfide (DMS) and is an important step in global sulfur and carbon cycles. DddP is a DMSP lyase in marine bacteria and the deduced dddP gene product is abundant in marine metagenomic data sets. However, DddP belongs to the M24 peptidase family according to sequence alignment. Peptidases hydrolyze C-N bonds but DddP is deduced to cleave C-S bonds. Mechanisms responsible for this striking functional shift are currently unknown. We determined the structures of DMSP lyase RlDddP (the DddP from Ruegeria lacuscaerulensis ITI_1157) bound to inhibitory 2-(N-morpholino) ethanesulfonic acid or PO43- and of two mutants of RlDddP bound to acrylate. Based on structural, mutational and biochemical analyses, we characterized a new ion-shift catalytic mechanism of RlDddP for DMSP cleavage. Further, we suggested the structural mechanism leading to the loss of peptidase activity and the subsequent development of DMSP lyase activity in DddP. This study sheds light on the catalytic mechanism and the divergent evolution of DddP, leading to a better understanding of marine bacterial DMSP catabolism and global DMS production.

  19. Structural and molecular basis for the novel catalytic mechanism and evolution of DddP, an abundant peptidase-like bacterial Dimethylsulfoniopropionate lyase: a new enzyme from an old fold.

    PubMed

    Wang, Peng; Chen, Xiu-Lan; Li, Chun-Yang; Gao, Xiang; Zhu, De-yu; Xie, Bin-Bin; Qin, Qi-Long; Zhang, Xi-Ying; Su, Hai-Nan; Zhou, Bai-Cheng; Xun, Lu-ying; Zhang, Yu-Zhong

    2015-10-01

    The microbial cleavage of dimethylsulfoniopropionate (DMSP) generates volatile dimethyl sulfide (DMS) and is an important step in global sulfur and carbon cycles. DddP is a DMSP lyase in marine bacteria, and the deduced dddP gene product is abundant in marine metagenomic data sets. However, DddP belongs to the M24 peptidase family according to sequence alignment. Peptidases hydrolyze C-N bonds, but DddP is deduced to cleave C-S bonds. Mechanisms responsible for this striking functional shift are currently unknown. We determined the structures of DMSP lyase RlDddP (the DddP from Ruegeria lacuscaerulensis ITI_1157) bound to inhibitory 2-(N-morpholino) ethanesulfonic acid or PO4 (3-) and of two mutants of RlDddP bound to acrylate. Based on structural, mutational and biochemical analyses, we characterized a new ion-shift catalytic mechanism of RlDddP for DMSP cleavage. Furthermore, we suggested the structural mechanism leading to the loss of peptidase activity and the subsequent development of DMSP lyase activity in DddP. This study sheds light on the catalytic mechanism and the divergent evolution of DddP, leading to a better understanding of marine bacterial DMSP catabolism and global DMS production. PMID:26154071

  20. Protein Solubility and Folding Enhancement by Interaction with RNA

    PubMed Central

    Choi, Seong Il; Han, Kyoung Sim; Kim, Chul Woo; Ryu, Ki-Sun; Kim, Byung Hee; Kim, Kyun-Hwan; Kim, Seo-Il; Kang, Tae Hyun; Shin, Hang-Cheol; Lim, Keo-Heun; Kim, Hyo Kyung; Hyun, Jeong-Min; Seong, Baik L.

    2008-01-01

    While basic mechanisms of several major molecular chaperones are well understood, this machinery has been known to be involved in folding of only limited number of proteins inside the cells. Here, we report a chaperone type of protein folding facilitated by interaction with RNA. When an RNA-binding module is placed at the N-terminus of aggregation-prone target proteins, this module, upon binding with RNA, further promotes the solubility of passenger proteins, potentially leading to enhancement of proper protein folding. Studies on in vitro refolding in the presence of RNA, coexpression of RNA molecules in vivo and the mutants with impaired RNA binding ability suggests that RNA can exert chaperoning effect on their bound proteins. The results suggest that RNA binding could affect the overall kinetic network of protein folding pathway in favor of productive folding over off-pathway aggregation. In addition, the RNA binding-mediated solubility enhancement is extremely robust for increasing soluble yield of passenger proteins and could be usefully implemented for high-throughput protein expression for functional and structural genomic research initiatives. The RNA-mediated chaperone type presented here would give new insights into de novo folding in vivo. PMID:18628952

  1. Folding analysis of the most complex Stevedore's protein knot.

    PubMed

    Wang, Iren; Chen, Szu-Yu; Hsu, Shang-Te Danny

    2016-01-01

    DehI is a homodimeric haloacid dehalogenase from Pseudomonas putida that contains the most complex 61 Stevedore's protein knot within its folding topology. To examine how DehI attains such an intricate knotted topology we combined far-UV circular dichroism (CD), intrinsic fluorescence spectroscopy and small angle X-ray scattering (SAXS) to investigate its folding mechanism. Equilibrium unfolding of DehI by chemical denaturation indicated the presence of two highly populated folding intermediates, I and I'. While the two intermediates vary in secondary structure contents and tertiary packing according to CD and intrinsic fluorescence, respectively, their overall dimension and compactness are similar according to SAXS. Three single-tryptophan variants (W34, W53, and W196) were generated to probe non-cooperative unfolding events localized around the three fluorophores. Kinetic fluorescence measurements indicated that the transition from the intermediate I' to the unfolded state is rate limiting. Our multiparametric folding analyses suggest that DehI unfolds through a linear folding pathway with two distinct folding intermediates by initial hydrophobic collapse followed by nucleation condensation, and that knotting precedes the formation of secondary structures. PMID:27527519

  2. Co- and Post-Translational Protein Folding in the ER.

    PubMed

    Ellgaard, Lars; McCaul, Nicholas; Chatsisvili, Anna; Braakman, Ineke

    2016-06-01

    The biophysical rules that govern folding of small, single-domain proteins in dilute solutions are now quite well understood. The mechanisms underlying co-translational folding of multidomain and membrane-spanning proteins in complex cellular environments are often less clear. The endoplasmic reticulum (ER) produces a plethora of membrane and secretory proteins, which must fold and assemble correctly before ER exit - if these processes fail, misfolded species accumulate in the ER or are degraded. The ER differs from other cellular organelles in terms of the physicochemical environment and the variety of ER-specific protein modifications. Here, we review chaperone-assisted co- and post-translational folding and assembly in the ER and underline the influence of protein modifications on these processes. We emphasize how method development has helped advance the field by allowing researchers to monitor the progression of folding as it occurs inside living cells, while at the same time probing the intricate relationship between protein modifications during folding. PMID:26947578

  3. Material parameter computation for multi-layered vocal fold models

    PubMed Central

    Schmidt, Bastian; Stingl, Michael; Leugering, Günter; Berry, David A.; Döllinger, Michael

    2011-01-01

    Today, the prevention and treatment of voice disorders is an ever-increasing health concern. Since many occupations rely on verbal communication, vocal health is necessary just to maintain one’s livelihood. Commonly applied models to study vocal fold vibrations and air flow distributions are self sustained physical models of the larynx composed of artificial silicone vocal folds. Choosing appropriate mechanical parameters for these vocal fold models while considering simplifications due to manufacturing restrictions is difficult but crucial for achieving realistic behavior. In the present work, a combination of experimental and numerical approaches to compute material parameters for synthetic vocal fold models is presented. The material parameters are derived from deformation behaviors of excised human larynges. The resulting deformations are used as reference displacements for a tracking functional to be optimized. Material optimization was applied to three-dimensional vocal fold models based on isotropic and transverse-isotropic material laws, considering both a layered model with homogeneous material properties on each layer and an inhomogeneous model. The best results exhibited a transversal-isotropic inhomogeneous (i.e., not producible) model. For the homogeneous model (three layers), the transversal-isotropic material parameters were also computed for each layer yielding deformations similar to the measured human vocal fold deformations. PMID:21476672

  4. Folding of viscous sheets and filaments

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Skorobogatiy, M.; Mahadevan, L.

    2000-12-01

    We consider the nonlinear folding behavior of a viscous filament or a sheet under the influence of an external force such as gravity. Everyday examples of this phenomenon are provided by the periodic folding of a sheet of honey as it impinges on toast, or the folding of a stream of shampoo as it falls on one's hand. To understand the evolution of a fold, we formulate and solve a free-boundary problem for the phenomenon, give scaling laws for the size of the folds and the frequency with which they are laid out, and verify these experimentally.

  5. Deterministic folding: The role of entropic forces and steric specificities

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    da Silva, Roosevelt A.; da Silva, M. A. A.; Caliri, A.

    2001-03-01

    The inverse folding problem of proteinlike macromolecules is studied by using a lattice Monte Carlo (MC) model in which steric specificities (nearest-neighbors constraints) are included and the hydrophobic effect is treated explicitly by considering interactions between the chain and solvent molecules. Chemical attributes and steric peculiarities of the residues are encoded in a 10-letter alphabet and a correspondent "syntax" is provided in order to write suitable sequences for the specified target structures; twenty-four target configurations, chosen in order to cover all possible values of the average contact order χ (0.2381⩽χ⩽0.4947 for this system), were encoded and analyzed. The results, obtained by MC simulations, are strongly influenced by geometrical properties of the native configuration, namely χ and the relative number φ of crankshafts-type structures: For χ<0.35 the folding is deterministic, that is, the syntax is able to encode successful sequences: The system presents larger encodability, minimum sequence-target degeneracies and smaller characteristic folding time τf. For χ⩾0.35 the above results are not reproduced any more: The folding success is severely reduced, showing strong correlation with φ. Additionally, the existence of distinct characteristic folding times suggests that different mechanisms are acting at the same time in the folding process. The results (all obtained from the same single model, under the same "physiological conditions") resemble some general features of the folding problem, supporting the premise that the steric specificities, in association with the entropic forces (hydrophobic effect), are basic ingredients in the protein folding process.

  6. Understanding Protein Non-Folding

    PubMed Central

    Uversky, Vladimir N.; Dunker, A. Keith

    2010-01-01

    This review describes the family of intrinsically disordered proteins, members of which fail to form rigid 3-D structures under physiological conditions, either along their entire lengths or only in localized regions. Instead, these intriguing proteins/regions exist as dynamic ensembles within which atom positions and backbone Ramachandran angles exhibit extreme temporal fluctuations without specific equilibrium values. Many of these intrinsically disordered proteins are known to carry out important biological functions which, in fact, depend on the absence of specific 3-D structure. The existence of such proteins does not fit the prevailing structure-function paradigm, which states that unique 3-D structure is a prerequisite to function. Thus, the protein structure-function paradigm has to be expanded to include intrinsically disordered proteins and alternative relationships among protein sequence, structure, and function. This shift in the paradigm represents a major breakthrough for biochemistry, biophysics and molecular biology, as it opens new levels of understanding with regard to the complex life of proteins. This review will try to answer the following questions: How were intrinsically disordered proteins discovered? Why don't these proteins fold? What is so special about intrinsic disorder? What are the functional advantages of disordered proteins/regions? What is the functional repertoire of these proteins? What are the relationships between intrinsically disordered proteins and human diseases? PMID:20117254

  7. Intermediates and the folding of proteins L and G

    SciTech Connect

    Brown, Scott; Head-Gordon, Teresa

    2003-07-01

    We use a minimalist protein model, in combination with a sequence design strategy, to determine differences in primary structure for proteins L and G that are responsible for the two proteins folding through distinctly different folding mechanisms. We find that the folding of proteins L and G are consistent with a nucleation-condensation mechanism, each of which is described as helix-assisted {beta}-1 and {beta}-2 hairpin formation, respectively. We determine that the model for protein G exhibits an early intermediate that precedes the rate-limiting barrier of folding and which draws together misaligned secondary structure elements that are stabilized by hydrophobic core contacts involving the third {beta}-strand, and presages the later transition state in which the correct strand alignment of these same secondary structure elements is restored. Finally the validity of the targeted intermediate ensemble for protein G was analyzed by fitting the kinetic data to a two-step first order reversible reaction, proving that protein G folding involves an on-pathway early intermediate, and should be populated and therefore observable by experiment.

  8. Efficient fold-change detection based on protein-protein interactions.

    PubMed

    Buijsman, W; Sheinman, M

    2014-02-01

    Various biological sensory systems exhibit a response to a relative change of the stimulus, often referred to as fold-change detection. In the past few years, fold-change detecting mechanisms, based on transcriptional networks, have been proposed. Here we present a fold-change detecting mechanism, based on protein-protein interactions, consisting of two interacting proteins. This mechanism does not consume chemical energy and is not subject to transcriptional and translational noise, in contrast to previously proposed mechanisms. We show by analytical and numerical calculations that the mechanism is robust and can have a fast, precise, and efficient response for parameters that are relevant to eukaryotic cells. PMID:25353514

  9. Folded waveguide cavity coupler for ICRF heating

    SciTech Connect

    Owens, T.L.

    1986-01-01

    This paper introduces a new type of waveguide coupler for ion cyclotron range of frequencies (ICRF) heating which is an adaptation of a concept known as a ''folded waveguide'' reported by Barrow and Schaevitz in connection with low-frequency waveguide transmission systems. The basic idea involves ''folding'' a simple rectangular waveguide to form a more compact structure. Cutoff for the folded waveguide occurs when one-half of a free-space wavelength equals the path length around the ''folds'' of the structure. By adding a large number of folds, the path length around the folds can be made large, leading to very low cutoff frequencies relative to those for simple rectangular waveguides having comparable outside dimensions. Folded waveguide couplers are practical for frequencies as low as 60 MHz for some ports found on present-day experients.

  10. Thermodynamics and kinetics of apoazurin folding under macromolecular crowding effect and chemical interference

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Zegarra, Fabio; Cheung, Margaret

    2013-03-01

    Proteins fold in a cellular milieu crowded by different kinds of macromolecules. They exert volume exclusion impacting protein folding processes in vivo. Folding processes, however, has been studied by chemical denaturation under in vitro conditions. The impact of the two factors as an attempt to advance the understanding of folding mechanism in vivo is not understood. Here, we investigate the folding mechanisms of apoazurin affected by the macromolecular crowding and chemical interference by using coarse-grained molecular simulations. Crowding agents are modeled as hard-spheres and the chemical denaturation effects are implemented into an energy function of the side chain and backbone interactions. Protein folding stability, mechanism, and kinetics rates of apoazurin under chemical interference and macromolecular crowding conditions are being investigated. Supported by NSF, Molecular & Cellular Biosciences (MCB0919974).

  11. Conservation physiology

    PubMed Central

    Kronfeld-Schor, Noga

    2014-01-01

    Global change presents a huge and exciting challenge to the study of thermal physiology. The implication of thermoregulatory strategies and abilities for the survival of individuals and species, are of high importance for predicting species response to global change challenges and ways to mitigate them, and for conservation acts. A good example of such a study is the paper by Cooper and Withers in this issue.1

  12. Folding Wings like a Cockroach: A Review of Transverse Wing Folding Ensign Wasps (Hymenoptera: Evaniidae: Afrevania and Trissevania)

    PubMed Central

    Mikó, István; Copeland, Robert S.; Balhoff, James P.; Yoder, Matthew J.; Deans, Andrew R.

    2014-01-01

    We revise two relatively rare ensign wasp genera, whose species are restricted to Sub-Saharan Africa: Afrevania and Trissevania. Afrevania longipetiolata sp. nov., Trissevania heatherae sp. nov., T. hugoi sp. nov., T. mrimaensis sp. nov. and T. slideri sp. nov. are described, males and females of T. anemotis and Afrevania leroyi are redescribed, and an identification key for Trissevaniini is provided. We argue that Trissevania mrimaensis sp. nov. and T. heatherae sp. nov. populations are vulnerable, given their limited distributions and threats from mining activities in Kenya. We hypothesize that these taxa together comprise a monophyletic lineage, Trissevaniini, tr. nov., the members of which share the ability to fold their fore wings along two intersecting fold lines. Although wing folding of this type has been described for the hind wing of some insects four-plane wing folding of the fore wing has never been documented. The wing folding mechanism and the pattern of wing folds of Trissevaniini is shared only with some cockroach species (Blattodea). It is an interesting coincidence that all evaniids are predators of cockroach eggs. The major wing fold lines of Trissevaniini likely are not homologous to any known longitudinal anatomical structures on the wings of other Evaniidae. Members of the new tribe share the presence of a coupling mechanism between the fore wing and the mesosoma that is composed of a setal patch on the mesosoma and the retinaculum of the fore wing. While the setal patch is an evolutionary novelty, the retinaculum, which originally evolved to facilitate fore and hind wing coupling in Hymenoptera, exemplifies morphological exaptation. We also refine and clarify the Semantic Phenotype approach used in previous taxonomic revisions and explore the consequences of merging new with existing data. The way that semantic statements are formulated can evolve in parallel, alongside improvements to the ontologies themselves. PMID:24787704

  13. Heron conservation

    USGS Publications Warehouse

    2000-01-01

    Herons are large, popular and, in many cases, spectacular birds found in wetlands world-wide, both tropical and temperate, natural and man-made. Some populations are very small and localized, some have decreased, some have expanded their ranges, and a few are pests of human activities. In the fifteen years since the publication of the latest monographic treatment of the family, The Herons Handbook, there has been a tremendous increase in our knowledge of heron status and conservation requirements, set against a backdrop of increasing concern about the future of the world?s wetland habitats. This book provides a comprehensive update following two distinct threads. The status and conservation needs of herons are first presented on a regional basis, in a series of chapters set at a continental or subcontinental scale. Over 200 biologists and heron conservationists have contributed to the data summarized here, and the very latest census and survey results provide the most up-to-date and detailed picture of heron populations currently available. Chapters discussing several critical issues in heron conservation follow, tending to focus on the international nature of the problems.

  14. Differential conformational modulations of MreB folding upon interactions with GroEL/ES and TRiC chaperonin components

    PubMed Central

    Moparthi, Satish Babu; Carlsso