Forum for Science, Industry and Business

Sponsored by:     3M 
Search our Site:

 

Leading computational biologist joins IMB to investigate the role of genes and proteins in disease

02.04.2014

Miguel Andrade uses computational methods for studying gene and protein function with an emphasis on molecules related to human disease

With the vast amount of data generated in modern molecular biology research, powerful methods are needed to understand and make use of the results. For instance, new techniques let researchers model protein interactions, predict how the transcription of genes is regulated, and visualize how genes are expressed, both in health and disease.


©: Miguel Andrade

PolyQ modulation of protein-protein interactions. When the polyQ-containing protein (red) interacts with protein X (orange) via a coiled coil interaction, the polyQ adopts a coiled coil conformation, which extends the preceding coiled coil (blue). The polyP region (green) cannot adopt a coiled coil conformation, effectively capping the interaction-dependent conformational change of the polyQ region.

Professor Miguel Andrade's work spans all these areas, plus data and text mining of the biomedical literature. These strands of research are connected by the computational tools developed and applied by his group to make sense of large data sets from biological experiments.

One such tool is HIPPIE, a database that integrates protein-protein interaction data. Combining information from genomic, phylogenetic and functional sources, for example, Andrade has shown that stretches of polyglutamine (polyQ) in proteins modulate interactions with other proteins (see Figure).

Abnormal expansion of polyQ can result in pathological protein aggregation, which may contribute to the disease mechanism in various neurodegenerative conditions, such as Huntington’s disease or spinocerebellar ataxia.

One of the main goals of Andrade's work is the prediction of protein and gene function by integrating heterogeneous data. An example of this is his recent observation that microRNA targets and functions can be better predicted using data about the targets of transcriptional suppressor proteins. This finding has been applied to the neural repressor protein REST to identify candidate miRNAs that could act as suppressors of brain cancer.

Another aspect of Andrade's work concerns the development of methods for data and text mining of the biomedical literature, for example abstracts of scientific papers in the PubMed database. Fast prioritization of hundreds of thousands of PubMed records according to user-defined topics in a matter of seconds allows efficient exploration of the biomedical corpus, and can be used to sort genes and chemicals according to their relevance to a topic. Professor Miguel Andrade's group has also used PubMed to study economic, linguistic and scientific trends, and to find appropriate reviewers for manuscripts.

Professor Christof Niehrs, IMB's Founding Director, says the recruitment of Miguel Andrade is a boon for IMB as well as for the wider biology community in Mainz. "Miguel Andrade's computational work ideally complements the wet lab expertise we already have at IMB. As a leader in bioinformatics, Miguel is a pivotal asset for the life sciences in Mainz."

Professor Miguel Andrade is joining IMB from the Max Delbrück Center for Molecular Medicine in Berlin, where he has headed the Computational Biology and Data Mining group since 2007. From 2003 to 2007, he was Assistant Professor in the Department of Medicine of the University of Ottawa in Canada, and Scientist and Head of the Bioinformatics Group of the Ottawa Health Research Institute. In addition to being appointed professor in the Faculty of Biology at Johannes Gutenberg University Mainz, Professor Miguel Andrade will join IMB as the Institute's 14th Group Leader.

Weitere Informationen:

http://www.uni-mainz.de/presse/17172_ENG_HTML.php - press release ;
https://www.imb-mainz.de/research/andrade/research/ - Computational Biology & Data Mining at IMB

Petra Giegerich | idw - Informationsdienst Wissenschaft

Further reports about: Biology Computational IMB Medicine biologist genes interactions polyQ proteins

More articles from Life Sciences:

nachricht Genetic Regulation of the Thymus Function Identified
23.08.2016 | Universität Basel

nachricht Sun protection for plants - Plant substances can protect plants against harmful UV radiation
22.08.2016 | Max-Planck-Institut für Molekulare Pflanzenphysiologie

All articles from Life Sciences >>>

The most recent press releases about innovation >>>

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

Im Focus: Streamlining accelerated computing for industry

PyFR code combines high accuracy with flexibility to resolve unsteady turbulence problems

Scientists and engineers striving to create the next machine-age marvel--whether it be a more aerodynamic rocket, a faster race car, or a higher-efficiency jet...

Im Focus: X-ray optics on a chip

Waveguides are widely used for filtering, confining, guiding, coupling or splitting beams of visible light. However, creating waveguides that could do the same for X-rays has posed tremendous challenges in fabrication, so they are still only in an early stage of development.

In the latest issue of Acta Crystallographica Section A: Foundations and Advances , Sarah Hoffmann-Urlaub and Tim Salditt report the fabrication and testing of...

Im Focus: Piggyback battery for microchips: TU Graz researchers develop new battery concept

Electrochemists at TU Graz have managed to use monocrystalline semiconductor silicon as an active storage electrode in lithium batteries. This enables an integrated power supply to be made for microchips with a rechargeable battery.

Small electrical gadgets, such as mobile phones, tablets or notebooks, are indispensable accompaniments of everyday life. Integrated circuits in the interiors...

Im Focus: UCI physicists confirm possible discovery of fifth force of nature

Light particle could be key to understanding dark matter in universe

Recent findings indicating the possible discovery of a previously unknown subatomic particle may be evidence of a fifth fundamental force of nature, according...

Im Focus: Wi-fi from lasers

White light from lasers demonstrates data speeds of up to 2 GB/s

A nanocrystalline material that rapidly makes white light out of blue light has been developed by KAUST researchers.

All Focus news of the innovation-report >>>

Anzeige

Anzeige

Event News

New Ideas for the Shipping Industry

24.08.2016 | Event News

A week of excellence: 22 of the world’s best computer scientists and mathematicians in Heidelberg

12.08.2016 | Event News

Towards the connected, automated and electrified automobiles: AMAA conference in Brussels

02.08.2016 | Event News

 
Latest News

New Ideas for the Shipping Industry

24.08.2016 | Event News

Lehigh engineer discovers a high-speed nano-avalanche

24.08.2016 | Physics and Astronomy

Streamlining accelerated computing for industry

24.08.2016 | Physics and Astronomy

VideoLinks
B2B-VideoLinks
More VideoLinks >>>