New tools in membrane protein determination

Department of Biochemistry & Biophysics, University of California San Francisco, S-412C Genentech Hall, 600 16th Street, San Francisco, CA 94158-2517 USA.
F1000 Biology Reports 04/2011; 3(1):8. DOI: 10.3410/B3-8
Source: PubMed


The determination of membrane structures presents the structural biologist with many challenges; however, the last two years have seen major advances in our ability to resolve these structures at atomic resolution. My goal here is to summarize some of the most recent advances that have enhanced our prospects for understanding membrane proteins at the level of atomic structure.

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    • "This problem is generally addressed by varying the conditions in which the protein is brought and kept in solution. Most often, numerous detergents and additives such as lipids, ligands, fusion approaches and conformation specific antibodies must be tested, a lengthy and tedious undertaking with no guarantee of success [4]–[8]. In addition, the protein itself may be modified, often randomly or in a systematic manner (see review [9]). "
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