Forum for Science, Industry and Business

Sponsored by:     3M 
Search our Site:

 

New protein target may advance design of HIV and cancer drugs

31.05.2006
Using small molecules containing platinum, Virginia Commonwealth University Massey Cancer Center researchers have created a process to inhibit a class of proteins important in HIV and cancer.

The findings may help researchers develop new drugs to fight HIV or cancer by selectively targeting proteins known as zinc fingers.

In the May 30 issue of the journal Chemistry & Biology, researchers reported that a zinc finger protein, known as HIV NCp7, can be inhibited when it is exposed to a platinum complex. They observed that when the HIV NCp7 protein interacts with platinum, the zinc portion of the molecule is ejected from the protein chain. This causes the protein to lose its tertiary structure or overall shape. For these molecules, shape is an important property that enables the protein to carry out certain biological functions.

The process, active site displacement, involved design of a platinum drug with higher affinity for the protein peptide backbone, thus eliminating the zinc from its active site.

In the specific case discussed in the paper, the HIV NCp7 protein is responsible for the proliferation of the HIV virus. If researchers can inhibit the action of this zinc finger protein, they can stop the spread of the virus.

"When we target specific viruses with drugs, over time patients can become resistant to treatment and the drug becomes ineffective. Therefore, novel biological processes and proteins are attractive targets for antiviral drug development," said lead author Nicholas Farrell, Ph.D., professor and chair in the Department of Chemistry at VCU and a member scientist with the VCU Massey Cancer Center.

According to Farrell, these study findings may also one day be applied to the selective targeting of zinc fingers involved in the biological processes responsible for the spread of cancer. By applying the concept to development of anticancer drugs, the researchers hope to design more specific clinical agents with reduced side effects compared to the very useful, but toxic, cisplatin and congeners.

Sathya Achia-Abraham | EurekAlert!
Further information:
http://www.vcu.edu

More articles from Life Sciences:

nachricht Nanoparticle Exposure Can Awaken Dormant Viruses in the Lungs
16.01.2017 | Helmholtz Zentrum München - Deutsches Forschungszentrum für Gesundheit und Umwelt

nachricht Cholera bacteria infect more effectively with a simple twist of shape
13.01.2017 | Princeton University

All articles from Life Sciences >>>

The most recent press releases about innovation >>>

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

Im Focus: Designing Architecture with Solar Building Envelopes

Among the general public, solar thermal energy is currently associated with dark blue, rectangular collectors on building roofs. Technologies are needed for aesthetically high quality architecture which offer the architect more room for manoeuvre when it comes to low- and plus-energy buildings. With the “ArKol” project, researchers at Fraunhofer ISE together with partners are currently developing two façade collectors for solar thermal energy generation, which permit a high degree of design flexibility: a strip collector for opaque façade sections and a solar thermal blind for transparent sections. The current state of the two developments will be presented at the BAU 2017 trade fair.

As part of the “ArKol – development of architecturally highly integrated façade collectors with heat pipes” project, Fraunhofer ISE together with its partners...

Im Focus: How to inflate a hardened concrete shell with a weight of 80 t

At TU Wien, an alternative for resource intensive formwork for the construction of concrete domes was developed. It is now used in a test dome for the Austrian Federal Railways Infrastructure (ÖBB Infrastruktur).

Concrete shells are efficient structures, but not very resource efficient. The formwork for the construction of concrete domes alone requires a high amount of...

Im Focus: Bacterial Pac Man molecule snaps at sugar

Many pathogens use certain sugar compounds from their host to help conceal themselves against the immune system. Scientists at the University of Bonn have now, in cooperation with researchers at the University of York in the United Kingdom, analyzed the dynamics of a bacterial molecule that is involved in this process. They demonstrate that the protein grabs onto the sugar molecule with a Pac Man-like chewing motion and holds it until it can be used. Their results could help design therapeutics that could make the protein poorer at grabbing and holding and hence compromise the pathogen in the host. The study has now been published in “Biophysical Journal”.

The cells of the mouth, nose and intestinal mucosa produce large quantities of a chemical called sialic acid. Many bacteria possess a special transport system...

Im Focus: Newly proposed reference datasets improve weather satellite data quality

UMD, NOAA collaboration demonstrates suitability of in-orbit datasets for weather satellite calibration

"Traffic and weather, together on the hour!" blasts your local radio station, while your smartphone knows the weather halfway across the world. A network of...

Im Focus: Repairing defects in fiber-reinforced plastics more efficiently

Fiber-reinforced plastics (FRP) are frequently used in the aeronautic and automobile industry. However, the repair of workpieces made of these composite materials is often less profitable than exchanging the part. In order to increase the lifetime of FRP parts and to make them more eco-efficient, the Laser Zentrum Hannover e.V. (LZH) and the Apodius GmbH want to combine a new measuring device for fiber layer orientation with an innovative laser-based repair process.

Defects in FRP pieces may be production or operation-related. Whether or not repair is cost-effective depends on the geometry of the defective area, the tools...

All Focus news of the innovation-report >>>

Anzeige

Anzeige

Event News

12V, 48V, high-voltage – trends in E/E automotive architecture

10.01.2017 | Event News

2nd Conference on Non-Textual Information on 10 and 11 May 2017 in Hannover

09.01.2017 | Event News

Nothing will happen without batteries making it happen!

05.01.2017 | Event News

 
Latest News

Multiregional brain on a chip

16.01.2017 | Power and Electrical Engineering

New technology enables 5-D imaging in live animals, humans

16.01.2017 | Information Technology

Researchers develop environmentally friendly soy air filter

16.01.2017 | Power and Electrical Engineering

VideoLinks
B2B-VideoLinks
More VideoLinks >>>