In human cells, vitamins often serve as the precursors of "cofactors" - non-proteins which are an essential part of enzymes. Among them are the flavins, which the organism derives from vitamin B2.
A team headed by Dr. Robin Teufel and Dr. Raspudin Saleem-Batcha of the University of Freiburg at the Center for Biological Systems Analysis has now shown in detail how oxygen interacts with the flavin in an enzyme - revealing for the first time precisely how it works.
The researchers have published their results in the latest Proceedings of the National Academy USA (PNAS).
Flavins play a key role in metabolic processes, in the immune system and in neural development in humans - and are equally important to bacteria, fungi and plants.
Flavoenzymes often require oxygen to function. But until now many of the details of their interaction were not known.
The researchers used x-ray diffraction analysis to show for the first time that oxygen is bound to a special pocket inside the enzyme.
The nature of this compound makes it possible to activate the cofactor - making it essential for the enzyme to work. This knowledge may help, for example, to rationally modify flavoenzymes in the future - in basic research or for biotechnological applications.
Raspudin Saleem-Batcha, Frederick Stull, Jacob N. Sanders, Bradley S. Moore, Bruce A. Palfey, K. N. Houk, Robin Teufel: Enzymatic control of dioxygen binding and functionalization of the Flavin cofactor. In: Proceedings of the National Academy of Sciences USA. DOI: 10.1073
Center for Biological Systems Analysis
University of Freiburg
Dr. Robin Teufel | EurekAlert!
Scientists discover how the molecule-sorting station in our cells is formed and maintained
18.11.2019 | Tokyo University of Science
Pesticides: Improved effect prediction of low toxicant concentrations
18.11.2019 | Helmholtz Centre for Environmental Research - UFZ
An international team of scientists, including three researchers from New Jersey Institute of Technology (NJIT), has shed new light on one of the central mysteries of solar physics: how energy from the Sun is transferred to the star's upper atmosphere, heating it to 1 million degrees Fahrenheit and higher in some regions, temperatures that are vastly hotter than the Sun's surface.
With new images from NJIT's Big Bear Solar Observatory (BBSO), the researchers have revealed in groundbreaking, granular detail what appears to be a likely...
The Fraunhofer Institute for Manufacturing Technology and Advanced Materials IFAM in Dresden has succeeded in using Selective Electron Beam Melting (SEBM) to...
Carbon nanotubes (CNTs) are valuable for a wide variety of applications. Made of graphene sheets rolled into tubes 10,000 times smaller than a human hair, CNTs have an exceptional strength-to-mass ratio and excellent thermal and electrical properties. These features make them ideal for a range of applications, including supercapacitors, interconnects, adhesives, particle trapping and structural color.
New research reveals even more potential for CNTs: as a coating, they can both repel and hold water in place, a useful property for applications like printing,...
If you've ever tried to put several really strong, small cube magnets right next to each other on a magnetic board, you'll know that you just can't do it. What happens is that the magnets always arrange themselves in a column sticking out vertically from the magnetic board. Moreover, it's almost impossible to join several rows of these magnets together to form a flat surface. That's because magnets are dipolar. Equal poles repel each other, with the north pole of one magnet always attaching itself to the south pole of another and vice versa. This explains why they form a column with all the magnets aligned the same way.
Now, scientists at ETH Zurich have managed to create magnetic building blocks in the shape of cubes that - for the first time ever - can be joined together to...
Quantum-based communication and computation technologies promise unprecedented applications, such as unconditionally secure communications, ultra-precise...
15.11.2019 | Event News
15.11.2019 | Event News
05.11.2019 | Event News
18.11.2019 | Earth Sciences
18.11.2019 | Life Sciences
18.11.2019 | Power and Electrical Engineering