Forum for Science, Industry and Business

Sponsored by:     3M 
Search our Site:

 

New insight into double-protected dance of cell division

06.03.2013
Biochemists at the University of Massachusetts Amherst including assistant professor Peter Chien recently gained new insight into how protein synthesis and degradation help to regulate the delicate ballet of cell division. In particular, they reveal how two proteins shelter each other in “mutually assured cleanup” to insure that division goes smoothly and safely.
Cells must routinely dispose of leftover proteins with the aid of proteases that cut up and recycle used proteins. The problem for biochemists is that the same protein molecule can be toxic garbage at one time, but essential for function at another time such as during the cell cycle, that is, events that unfold to achieve replication of chromosomes and division of the cell.

As Chien explains, “We know that a process that has to happen as reliably and stably as cell division also has to be flexible enough to allow the organism to grow and respond to its ever-changing environment. We’re interested in uncovering all the steps and back-up safeguards that cells use to robustly protect replication while at the same time allowing other functions to proceed.” Results appear in the early online edition of Molecular Microbiology.

To do this work, Amber Cantin in Chien’s lab, closely collaborated with Michael Laub and colleagues at MIT to look in a bacteria, Caulobacter, where they had previously figured out how cells distinguish waste proteins from useful molecules. They focused on a protein called CtrA that sits on DNA like a cap, controlling replication until conditions are right for division to occur.

Destruction of CtrA allows cells to start replicating their chromosome. Cantin used biochemical experiments with highly purified proteins to show that CtrA was only degraded when it was bound to DNA and that another protein, SciP, could help make CtrA bind better to DNA, making CtrA more resistant to proteolysis.

Surprisingly, this also made SciP less able to be destroyed as well, showing that both proteins prevent their own destruction by protecting each other. In addition, while both proteins were destroyed, they were recognized by completely different proteases. These advances, along with current findings, may offer medical researchers a clue for understanding diseases such as abnormal cell cycle progression in cancer.

This work was funded by a grant from the National Institutes of Health and additional funds from UMass Amherst.

Janet Lathrop | EurekAlert!
Further information:
http://www.umass.edu

Further reports about: Amherst Cantin CtrA DNA SCIP cell cycle molecular microbiology

More articles from Life Sciences:

nachricht Cancer diagnosis: no more needles?
25.05.2018 | Christian-Albrechts-Universität zu Kiel

nachricht Less is more? Gene switch for healthy aging found
25.05.2018 | Leibniz-Institut für Alternsforschung - Fritz-Lipmann-Institut e.V. (FLI)

All articles from Life Sciences >>>

The most recent press releases about innovation >>>

Die letzten 5 Focus-News des innovations-reports im Überblick:

Im Focus: Powerful IT security for the car of the future – research alliance develops new approaches

The more electronics steer, accelerate and brake cars, the more important it is to protect them against cyber-attacks. That is why 15 partners from industry and academia will work together over the next three years on new approaches to IT security in self-driving cars. The joint project goes by the name Security For Connected, Autonomous Cars (SecForCARs) and has funding of €7.2 million from the German Federal Ministry of Education and Research. Infineon is leading the project.

Vehicles already offer diverse communication interfaces and more and more automated functions, such as distance and lane-keeping assist systems. At the same...

Im Focus: Molecular switch will facilitate the development of pioneering electro-optical devices

A research team led by physicists at the Technical University of Munich (TUM) has developed molecular nanoswitches that can be toggled between two structurally different states using an applied voltage. They can serve as the basis for a pioneering class of devices that could replace silicon-based components with organic molecules.

The development of new electronic technologies drives the incessant reduction of functional component sizes. In the context of an international collaborative...

Im Focus: LZH showcases laser material processing of tomorrow at the LASYS 2018

At the LASYS 2018, from June 5th to 7th, the Laser Zentrum Hannover e.V. (LZH) will be showcasing processes for the laser material processing of tomorrow in hall 4 at stand 4E75. With blown bomb shells the LZH will present first results of a research project on civil security.

At this year's LASYS, the LZH will exhibit light-based processes such as cutting, welding, ablation and structuring as well as additive manufacturing for...

Im Focus: Self-illuminating pixels for a new display generation

There are videos on the internet that can make one marvel at technology. For example, a smartphone is casually bent around the arm or a thin-film display is rolled in all directions and with almost every diameter. From the user's point of view, this looks fantastic. From a professional point of view, however, the question arises: Is that already possible?

At Display Week 2018, scientists from the Fraunhofer Institute for Applied Polymer Research IAP will be demonstrating today’s technological possibilities and...

Im Focus: Explanation for puzzling quantum oscillations has been found

So-called quantum many-body scars allow quantum systems to stay out of equilibrium much longer, explaining experiment | Study published in Nature Physics

Recently, researchers from Harvard and MIT succeeded in trapping a record 53 atoms and individually controlling their quantum state, realizing what is called a...

All Focus news of the innovation-report >>>

Anzeige

Anzeige

VideoLinks
Industry & Economy
Event News

In focus: Climate adapted plants

25.05.2018 | Event News

Save the date: Forum European Neuroscience – 07-11 July 2018 in Berlin, Germany

02.05.2018 | Event News

Invitation to the upcoming "Current Topics in Bioinformatics: Big Data in Genomics and Medicine"

13.04.2018 | Event News

 
Latest News

In focus: Climate adapted plants

25.05.2018 | Event News

Flow probes from the 3D printer

25.05.2018 | Machine Engineering

Less is more? Gene switch for healthy aging found

25.05.2018 | Life Sciences

VideoLinks
Science & Research
Overview of more VideoLinks >>>