Forum for Science, Industry and Business

Sponsored by:     3M 
Search our Site:

 

Insights into a Virus Proteome

23.11.2012
Max Planck Scientists Identify Unknown Proteins of the Herpesvirus

The genome encodes the complete information needed by an organism, including that required for protein production. Viruses, which are up to a thousand times smaller than human cells, have considerably smaller genomes.


Herpesvirus

Using a type of herpesvirus as a model system, the scientists of the Max Planck Institute (MPI) of Biochemistry in Martinsried near Munich and their collaboration partners at the University of California in San Francisco have shown that the genome of this virus contains much more information than previously assumed.

The researchers identified several hundred novel proteins, many of which were surprisingly small. The results of the study have now been published in Science.

More than 80 percent of the world’s population is infected with the herpesvirus, which can cause severe diseases in newborns and in persons with weakened immune system. Researchers had already sequenced the herpesvirus genome 20 years ago, thinking they could then predict all proteins that the virus produces (virus proteome). Now scientists from the research department of Matthias Mann, director at the MPI of Biochemistry, and their American colleagues have analyzed the information content of the genome more precisely.

Small but highly complex

To carry out their study, the scientists infected cells with herpesvirus and observed which proteins the virus produced inside the cell over a period of 72 hours. In order for proteins to be produced at all, the cell machinery must first make copies of the genetic material as intermediate products (RNA). While investigating the intermediate products of the herpesvirus, the American collaborators discovered many novel RNA molecules which were in large part surprisingly short. They also found that the organization of information required for protein production in the virus genome was far more complex than previously assumed. Annette Michalski, a scientist in the Department of Proteomics and Signal Transduction at the MPI of Biochemistry, was subsequently able to confirm directly the predicted viral proteins in the infected cell using mass spectrometry. This method enables an overview of the complete proteome of the virus-infected cell.

The results of the American and German researchers provide detailed insight into the complex mechanisms used by the virus. “We showed that it’s not enough merely to know the virus genome to understand the biology of the herpesvirus,” Annette Michalski said. “What is important is to look at the products actually produced from the genome.” Even human genes may be much more complex than the genome sequence itself indicates, commented the researchers. Matthias Mann and his colleagues plan to investigate this question further in the coming years.

Original publication:
N. Stern-Ginossar , B. Weisburd, A. Michalski, V. T. Khanh Le, M. Y. Hein, S.-X. Huang, M. Ma, B. Shen, S.-B. Qian, H. Hengel, M. Mann, N. T. Ingolia, J. S. Weissmann: Decoding Human Cytomegalovirus, Science, November 23, 2012.
DOI:10.1126/science.1227919

Contact:
Prof. Dr. Matthias Mann
Proteomics and Signal Transduction
Max Planck Institute of Biochemistry
Am Klopferspitz 18
82152 Martinsried
Germany
e-mail: mmann@biochem.mpg.de
www.biochem.mpg.de/mann

Anja Konschak
Public Relations
Max Planck Institute of Biochemistry
Am Klopferspitz 18
82152 Martinsried
Germany
Phone: +49 89 8578-2824
e-mail: konschak@biochem.mpg.de
Further information:

http://www.biochem.mpg.de/en/news/pressroom/086_Mann_HCMV.html

http://www.biochem.mpg.de/mann
(Research Department Proteomics and Signal Transduction)

http://weissmanlab.ucsf.edu/
Hompage of Weissmann Lab at UCSF)

Anja Konschak | Max-Planck-Institut
Further information:
http://www.biochem.mpg.de

More articles from Life Sciences:

nachricht Water forms 'spine of hydration' around DNA, group finds
26.05.2017 | Cornell University

nachricht How herpesviruses win the footrace against the immune system
26.05.2017 | Helmholtz-Zentrum für Infektionsforschung

All articles from Life Sciences >>>

The most recent press releases about innovation >>>

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

Im Focus: Can the immune system be boosted against Staphylococcus aureus by delivery of messenger RNA?

Staphylococcus aureus is a feared pathogen (MRSA, multi-resistant S. aureus) due to frequent resistances against many antibiotics, especially in hospital infections. Researchers at the Paul-Ehrlich-Institut have identified immunological processes that prevent a successful immune response directed against the pathogenic agent. The delivery of bacterial proteins with RNA adjuvant or messenger RNA (mRNA) into immune cells allows the re-direction of the immune response towards an active defense against S. aureus. This could be of significant importance for the development of an effective vaccine. PLOS Pathogens has published these research results online on 25 May 2017.

Staphylococcus aureus (S. aureus) is a bacterium that colonizes by far more than half of the skin and the mucosa of adults, usually without causing infections....

Im Focus: A quantum walk of photons

Physicists from the University of Würzburg are capable of generating identical looking single light particles at the push of a button. Two new studies now demonstrate the potential this method holds.

The quantum computer has fuelled the imagination of scientists for decades: It is based on fundamentally different phenomena than a conventional computer....

Im Focus: Turmoil in sluggish electrons’ existence

An international team of physicists has monitored the scattering behaviour of electrons in a non-conducting material in real-time. Their insights could be beneficial for radiotherapy.

We can refer to electrons in non-conducting materials as ‘sluggish’. Typically, they remain fixed in a location, deep inside an atomic composite. It is hence...

Im Focus: Wafer-thin Magnetic Materials Developed for Future Quantum Technologies

Two-dimensional magnetic structures are regarded as a promising material for new types of data storage, since the magnetic properties of individual molecular building blocks can be investigated and modified. For the first time, researchers have now produced a wafer-thin ferrimagnet, in which molecules with different magnetic centers arrange themselves on a gold surface to form a checkerboard pattern. Scientists at the Swiss Nanoscience Institute at the University of Basel and the Paul Scherrer Institute published their findings in the journal Nature Communications.

Ferrimagnets are composed of two centers which are magnetized at different strengths and point in opposing directions. Two-dimensional, quasi-flat ferrimagnets...

Im Focus: World's thinnest hologram paves path to new 3-D world

Nano-hologram paves way for integration of 3-D holography into everyday electronics

An Australian-Chinese research team has created the world's thinnest hologram, paving the way towards the integration of 3D holography into everyday...

All Focus news of the innovation-report >>>

Anzeige

Anzeige

Event News

Marine Conservation: IASS Contributes to UN Ocean Conference in New York on 5-9 June

24.05.2017 | Event News

AWK Aachen Machine Tool Colloquium 2017: Internet of Production for Agile Enterprises

23.05.2017 | Event News

Dortmund MST Conference presents Individualized Healthcare Solutions with micro and nanotechnology

22.05.2017 | Event News

 
Latest News

How herpesviruses win the footrace against the immune system

26.05.2017 | Life Sciences

Water forms 'spine of hydration' around DNA, group finds

26.05.2017 | Life Sciences

First Juno science results supported by University of Leicester's Jupiter 'forecast'

26.05.2017 | Physics and Astronomy

VideoLinks
B2B-VideoLinks
More VideoLinks >>>