Colin J Jackson

Colin J Jackson
Australian National University | ANU · Research School of Chemistry

PhD Chemistry

About

195
Publications
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4,337
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Publications

Publications (195)
Article
Protein biosensors play increasingly important roles in cell and neurobiology and have the potential to revolutionise the way clinical and industrial analytics are performed. The gradual transition from multicomponent biosensors to fully integrated single chain allosteric biosensors has brought the field closer to commercial applications. We evalua...
Article
Biological information processing networks rely on allosteric protein switches that dynamically interconvert biological signals. Construction of their artificial analogues is a central goal of synthetic biology and bioengineering. Receptor domain insertion is one of the leading methods for constructing chimeric protein switches. Here we present an...
Article
Optical metasurfaces are planar metamaterials that can mediate highly precise light-matter interactions. Because of their unique optical properties, both plasmonic and dielectric metasurfaces have found common use in sensing applications, enabling label-free, nondestructive, and miniaturized sensors with ultralow limits of detection. However, becau...
Preprint
Tuberculosis remains one of the leading causes of death from a single infectious agent, surpassing both AIDS and malaria. In recent years, two bicyclic nitroimidazole drugs, delamanid and pretomanid have been approved to treat this airborne infection. This has spurred a renewed interest in developing new and improved nitroimidazole analogs. We have...
Article
Understanding how protein sequences have evolved is one of the defining challenges in modern biology. In this issue of Cell Systems, Hie et al. describe a novel phylogenetic approach, dubbed “evo-velocity,” that exploits protein language modeling to overcome many limitations of traditional phylogenetic analysis.
Article
Full-text available
Antivirals that specifically target SARS-CoV-2 are needed to control the COVID-19 pandemic. The main protease (Mpro) is essential for SARS-CoV-2 replication and is an attractive target for antiviral development. Here we report the use of the Random nonstandard Peptide Integrated Discovery (RaPID) mRNA display on a chemically cross-linked SARS-CoV-2...
Article
Full-text available
Heparanase is the only human enzyme known to hydrolyse heparin sulfate and is involved in many important physiological processes. However, it is also unregulated in many disease states, such as cancer, diabetes and Covid-19. It is thus an important drug target, yet the heterologous production of heparanase is challenging and only possible in mammal...
Article
Full-text available
Cyanopyridylalanines are non‐canonical amino acids that react with aminothiol compounds under physiological conditions in a biocompatible manner without requiring added catalyst. Here we present newly developed aminoacyl‐tRNA synthetases for genetic encoding of meta ‐ and para ‐cyanopyridylalanine to enable the site‐specific attachment of a wide ra...
Article
Cyanopyridylalanines are non‐canonical amino acids that react with aminothiol compounds under physiological conditions in a biocompatible manner without requiring added catalyst. Here we present newly developed aminoacyl‐tRNA synthetases for genetic encoding of meta ‐ and para ‐cyanopyridylalanine to enable the site‐specific attachment of a wide ra...
Article
Full-text available
The development of nanoscale optical sensors is desirable for a broad range of applications, including wearable medical-diagnostics, biochemical detection , and environmental monitoring. Optical detection platforms based on resonant nanostructures are the golden standard for miniaturized footprint and high optical sensitivity. These sensors functio...
Article
Full-text available
Protein conformational changes can facilitate the binding of noncognate substrates and underlying promiscuous activities. However, the contribution of substrate conformational dynamics to this process is comparatively poorly understood. Here, we analyze human (hMAT2A) and Escherichia coli (eMAT) methionine adenosyltransferases that have identical a...
Article
Full-text available
Here, we describe a facile route to the synthesis of enzymatically active highly fabricable plastics, where the enzyme is an intrinsic component of the material. This is facilitated by the formation of an electrostatically stabilized enzyme–polymer surfactant nanoconstruct, which, after lyophilization and melting, affords stable macromolecular disp...
Article
Full-text available
The deazaflavin cofactor F420 is a low-potential, two-electron redox cofactor produced by some Archaea and Eubacteria that is involved in methanogenesis and methanotrophy, antibiotic biosynthesis, and xenobiotic metabolism. However, it is not produced by bacterial strains commonly used for industrial biocatalysis or recombinant protein production,...
Preprint
Full-text available
Cyanopyridylalanines are non-canonical amino acids that react with aminothiol compounds under physiological conditions in a biocompatible manner without requiring added catalyst. Here we present newly developed aminoacyl-tRNA synthetases for genetic encoding of meta- and para-cyanopyridylalanine to enable the site-specific attachment of a wide rang...
Preprint
Cyanopyridylalanines are non-canonical amino acids that react with aminothiol compounds under physiological conditions in a biocompatible manner without requiring added catalyst. Here we present newly developed aminoacyl-tRNA synthetases for genetic encoding of meta- and para-cyanopyridylalanine to enable the site-specific attachment of a wide rang...
Article
Full-text available
Viral mutations are an emerging concern in reducing SARS-CoV-2 vaccination efficacy. Second generation vaccines will need to elicit neutralizing antibodies against sites that are evolutionarily conserved across the sarbecovirus subgenus. Here, we immunized mice containing a human antibody repertoire with diverse sarbecovirus receptor binding domain...
Preprint
Full-text available
Antivirals that specifically target SARS-CoV-2 are needed to control the COVID-19 pandemic. The main protease (Mpro) is essential for SARS-CoV-2 replication and is an attractive target for antiviral development. Here we report the use of the Random nonstandard Peptide Integrated Discovery (RaPID) mRNA display on a chemically cross-linked SARS-CoV-2...
Article
Full-text available
Endolysin enzymes from bacteriophage cause bacterial lysis by degrading the peptidoglycan cell wall. The streptococcal C1 phage endolysin PlyC, is the most potent endolysin described to date and can rapidly lyse group A, C and E streptococci. PlyC is known to bind the Group A streptococcal cell wall, but the specific molecular target or the binding...
Article
Specific anti-coronaviral drugs complementing available vaccines are urgently needed to fight the COVID-19 pandemic. Given its high conservation across the betacoronavirus genus and dissimilarity to human proteases, the SARS-CoV-2 main protease (Mpro) is an attractive drug target. SARS-CoV-2 Mpro inhibitors have been developed at unprecedented spee...
Article
Full-text available
Triaza-coumarin (TA-C) is a Mycobacterium tuberculosis (Mtb) dihydrofolate reductase (DHFR) inhibitor with an IC 50 (half maximal inhibitory concentration) of ∼1 µM against the enzyme. Despite this moderate target inhibition, TA-C shows exquisite antimycobacterial activity (MIC 50 , concentration inhibiting growth by 50% = 10 to 20 nM). Here, we in...
Preprint
Full-text available
Electrochemical biosensors allow the rapid, selective, and sensitive transduction of critical biological parameters into measurable signals. However, current electrochemical biosensors often fail to selectively and sensitively detect small molecules due to their small size and low molecular complexity. We have developed an electrochemical biosensin...
Article
In addition to its value in the study of molecular evolution, ancestral sequence reconstruction (ASR) has emerged as a useful methodology for engineering proteins with enhanced properties. Proteins generated by ASR often exhibit unique or improved activity, stability, and/or promiscuity, all of which are properties that are valued by protein engine...
Article
Full-text available
Non-ribosomal peptide synthetases are important enzymes for the assembly of complex peptide natural products. Within these multi-modular assembly lines, condensation domains perform the central function of chain assembly, typically by forming a peptide bond between two peptidyl carrier protein (PCP)-bound substrates. In this work, we report structu...
Article
Full-text available
Antibodies targeting the NANP/NVDP repeat domain of the Plasmodium falciparum circumsporozoite protein (CSPRepeat) can protect against malaria. However, it has also been suggested that the CSPRepeat is a decoy that prevents the immune system from mounting responses against other domains of CSP. Here, we show that, following parasite immunization, B...
Article
Full-text available
Serine protease inhibitors (serpins) are found in all kingdoms of life and play essential roles in multiple physiological processes. Owing to the diversity of the superfamily, phylogenetic analysis is challenging and prokaryotic serpins have been speculated to have been acquired from Metazoa through horizontal gene transfer (HGT) due to their unexp...
Article
Full-text available
Comparative genomic studies have repeatedly shown that new protein-coding genes can emerge de novo from noncoding DNA. Still unknown is how and when the structures of encoded de novo proteins emerge and evolve. Combining biochemical, genetic and evolutionary analyses, we elucidate the function and structure of goddard , a gene which appears to have...
Article
Full-text available
The fibronectin type III (FN3) monobody domain is a promising non-antibody scaffold which features a less complex architecture than an antibody while maintaining analogous binding loops. We previously developed FN3Con, a hyper-stable monobody derivative with diagnostic and therapeutic potential. Pre-stabilization of the scaffold mitigates the stabi...
Preprint
Full-text available
Protein conformational change can facilitate the binding of non-cognate substrates and underlie promiscuous activities. However, the contribution of substrate conformational dynamics to this process is comparatively poorly understood. Here we analyse human (hMAT2A) and Escherichia coli (eMAT) methionine adenosyltransferases that have identical acti...
Preprint
Cyanobacteria have evolved one of the most powerful CO 2 concentrating mechanisms (CCM), supporting high photosynthetic rates with limiting inorganic carbon (Ci), which makes their CCM a desirable system for integration into higher plant chloroplasts to enhance photosynthetic yield. The CCM is driven by active Ci uptake, facilitated by bicarbonate...
Article
Proteins are dynamic molecules whose structures consist of an ensemble of conformational states. Dynamics contribute to protein function and a link to protein evolution has begun to emerge. This increased appreciation for the evolutionary impact of conformational sampling has grown from our developing structural biology capabilities and the explora...
Preprint
Full-text available
Comparative genomic studies have repeatedly shown that new protein-coding genes can emerge de novo from non-coding DNA. Still unknown is how and when the structures of encoded de novo proteins emerge and evolve. Combining biochemical, genetic and evolutionary analyses, we elucidate the function and structure of goddard , a gene which appears to hav...
Conference Paper
We demonstrate the novel concept of resonant dielectric metagrating sensors, which exhibit enhanced sensitivity and robustness to source intensity. Using this platform, we experimentally shows exceptional refractive index and bio-molecular sensitivity.
Preprint
Full-text available
The fibronectin type III (FN3) monobody domain is a promising non-antibody scaffold which features a less complex architecture than an antibody while maintaining analogous binding loops. We previously developed FN3Con, a hyper-stable monobody derivative with diagnostic and therapeutic potential. Pre-stabilization of the scaffold mitigates the stabi...
Preprint
Full-text available
Non-ribosomal peptide synthetases are important enzymes for the assembly of complex peptide natural products. Within these multi-modular assembly lines, condensation domains perform the central function of chain assembly, typically by forming a peptide bond between two peptidyl carrier protein (PCP)-bound substrates. In this work, we report the fir...
Article
Full-text available
Several enzymes are known to have evolved from non-catalytic proteins such as solute-binding proteins (SBPs). Although attention has been focused on how a binding site can evolve to become catalytic, an equally important question is: how do the structural dynamics of a binding protein change as it becomes an efficient enzyme? Here we performed a va...
Preprint
Serine protease inhibitors (serpins) are found in all kingdoms of life and play essential roles in multiple physiological processes. Owing to the diversity of the superfamily, phylogenetic analysis is challenging and prokaryotic serpins have been speculated to have been acquired from Metazoa through horizontal gene transfer (HGT) due to their unexp...
Article
Full-text available
Synaptically released glutamate is largely cleared by glutamate transporters localized on perisynaptic astrocyte processes. Therefore, the substantial variability of astrocyte coverage of individual hippocampal synapses implies that the efficacy of local glutamate uptake and thus the spatial fidelity of synaptic transmission is synapse dependent. B...
Article
Full-text available
Many enzymes that catalyze protein post-translational modifications (PTM) can specifically modify multiple target proteins. However, little is known regarding the molecular basis and evolution of multi-specificity in these enzymes. Here, we used a combined bioinformatics and experimental approaches to investigate the evolution of multi-specificity...
Article
Full-text available
Extrasynaptic actions of glutamate are limited by high-affinity transporters expressed by perisynaptic astroglial processes (PAPs): this helps maintain point-to-point transmission in excitatory circuits. Memory formation in the brain is associated with synaptic remodeling, but how this affects PAPs and therefore extrasynaptic glutamate actions is p...
Preprint
Periplasmic solute-binding proteins (SBPs) have evolved to balance the demands of ligand affinity, thermostability and conformational change to carry out diverse functions in small molecule transport, sensing and chemotaxis. Although the ligand-induced conformational changes that occur in SBPs make them useful components in biosensors, their comple...
Article
Full-text available
An amendment to this paper has been published and can be accessed via a link at the top of the paper.
Article
Full-text available
Mycobacteria are major environmental microorganisms and cause many significant diseases, including tuberculosis. Mycobacteria make an unusual vitamin-like compound, F 420 , and use it to both persist during stress and resist antibiotic treatment. Understanding how mycobacteria make F 420 is important, as this process can be targeted to create new d...
Article
Marine algae are a major source of omega (ω)-3 long-chain polyunsaturated fatty acids (ω3-LCPUFAs), which are conditionally essential nutrients in humans and a target for industrial production. The biosynthesis of these molecules in marine algae begins withrequires the desaturation of fatty acids by Δ6-desaturases and enzymes from different species...
Article
Full-text available
Hydrogen has the potential to play an important role in decarbonising our energy systems. Crucial to achieving this is the ability to produce clean sources of hydrogen using renewable energy sources. Currently platinum is commonly used as a hydrogen evolution catalyst, however, the scarcity and expense of platinum is driving the need to develop non...
Preprint
Full-text available
F420 is a low-potential redox cofactor used by diverse bacteria and archaea. In mycobacteria, this cofactor has multiple roles, including adaptation to redox stress, cell wall biosynthesis, and activation of the clinical antitubercular prodrugs pretomanid and delamanid. A recent biochemical study proposed a revised biosynthesis pathway for F420 in...
Article
Full-text available
Our inability to predict which mutations could result in antibiotic resistance has made it difficult to rapidly identify the emergence of resistance, identify pre-existing resistant populations, and manage our use of antibiotics to effectively treat patients and prevent or slow the spread of resistance. Here we investigated the potential for resist...
Preprint
Full-text available
Marine algae are a major source of omega (ω)-3 long-chain polyunsaturated fatty acids (ω3-LCPUFAs), which are conditionally essential nutrients in humans and a target for industrial production. The biosynthesis of these molecules in marine algae begins with the desaturation of fatty acids by Δ6-desaturases and enzymes from different species display...
Preprint
Several enzymes are known to have evolved from non-catalytic proteins such as solute-binding proteins (SBPs). Although attention has been focused on how a binding site can evolve to become catalytic, an equally important question is: how do the structural dynamics of a binding protein change as it becomes an efficient enzyme? Here we performed a va...
Preprint
Full-text available
Many enzymes that catalyze protein post-translational modifications (PTM) can specifically modify multiple target proteins. However, little is known regarding the molecular basis and evolution of multi-specificity in these enzymes. Here, we used bioinformatics and experimental approaches to investigate the molecular basis and evolution of multi-spe...
Preprint
Full-text available
Antibodies targeting the NANP/NVDP repeat domain of the Plasmodium falciparum circumsporozoite protein (CSP Repeat ) can confer protection against malaria. However, it has also been suggested that this repeat domain exists as a decoy that distracts the immune system from mounting protective responses targeting other domains of CSP. Here we show tha...
Chapter
The stability of wild-type proteins is often a hurdle to their practical use in research, industry, and medicine. The route to engineering stability of a protein of interest lies largely with the available data. Where high-resolution structural data is available, rational design, based on fundamental principles of protein chemistry, can improve pro...
Chapter
The synthetic s-triazines are abundant, nitrogen-rich, heteroaromatic compounds used in a multitude of applications including, herbicides, plastics and polymers, and explosives. Their presence in the environment has led to the evolution of bacterial catabolic pathways in bacteria that allow use of these anthropogenic chemicals as a nitrogen source...
Article
Fuel cells convert chemical energy into electrical current with the use of an oxidant such as oxygen and have the potential to reduce our reliance on fossil fuels. To overcome the slow kinetics of the oxygen reduction reaction (ORR), platinum is often used as the catalyst. However, the scarcity and expense of platinum limits the wide-spread use of...
Article
Cyanobacteria have evolved a suite of enzymes and inorganic carbon (Ci) transporters that improve photosynthetic performance by increasing the localized concentration of CO2 around the primary CO2-fixating enzyme, Rubisco. This CO2-concentrating mechanism (CCM) is highly regulated, responds to illumination/darkness cycles and allows cyanobacteria t...
Article
Compounds 1-6 and 11 representing key members of the marinoquinoline family of natural products, together with the related marine alkaloid aplidiopsamine A (12), have been synthesized using various combinations of palladium-catalyzed Ullmann cross-coupling and reductive cyclization processes involving a C3-arylated pyrrole as the common intermediat...
Article
Full-text available
Characterizing the adaptive landscapes that encompass the emergence of novel enzyme functions can provide molecular insights into both enzymatic and evolutionary mechanisms. Here, we combine ancestral protein reconstruction with biochemical, structural and mutational analyses to characterize the functional evolution of methyl-parathion hydrolase (M...