HOME >> BIOLOGY >> NEWS
Cell's gatekeeper for ammonia revealed in unprecedented detail

Bacteria thrive on it, red blood cells carry it in high concentration, yet the human brain can't tolerate it. The ability of cells to acquire or dispose of ammonia can be a matter of life and death. In the September 10 issue of Science, UCSF researchers publish the first atomic-level structure of the channel that controls the passage of ammonia in and out of cells.

The complex structure -- depicted on the cover of Science -- was determined in greater detail than that of any cell membrane channel yet described. The structure can help reveal the molecular basis of often life-threatening diseases caused by ammonia toxicity, and provides the "template for designing drugs to treat the diseases," said Robert Stroud, PhD, professor of biochemistry and biophysics and of pharmaceutical chemistry at UCSF and senior author of the paper in Science.

Knowledge of the channel architecture is also expected to help explain how ammonia, carbon dioxide and other gases are taken in, transported between cells and excreted, the scientists said.

The issue of Science also includes a "Perspective" article about the significance of determining the structure and its likely mode of action.

The three-dimensional shape of other cell membrane channels -- those that conduct water and charged molecules called ions -- have been reported over the past six years. In 2000, Stroud's group was the first to discover the structure and mechanisms of the water-conducting channels.

To determine the structure of an ammonia channel, the UCSF scientists focused on AmtB, a protein that facilitates ammonia uptake in bacteria. The bacterial AmtB is a member of a "superfamily" of protein channels with very similar amino acid sequences and very similar functions in all species. Humans have four members of this superfamily of cell membrane channels. They are the Rh factors, most familiar as the Rh blood group antigens on the surface of red blood cells that can caus
'"/>

Contact: Wallace Ravven
wravven@pubaff.ucsf.edu
415-476-2557
University of California - San Francisco
9-Sep-2004


Page: 1 2 3

Related biology news :

1. Scientists Determine Atomic Structure Of Lego-Like Molecule That Self-Assembles Into Cells Cargo Capsule
2. UCSF team reveals how the most selective of all cell gatekeepers works -- a three-faced channel vital to most human organs
3. Asian elephant sex pheromone transporter revealed
4. Brains reward circuitry revealed in procrastinating primates
5. Endangered turtles trek along ocean currents revealed by satellite
6. Secret behind hard exoskeletons, spreading wings revealed
7. Genetic basis of hereditary nerve disorder revealed
8. Biochemical clues to long lifespan revealed
9. Enzyme revealed that is key to funguss ability to breach immune system
10. Bacterial relationships revealed
11. Genetic differences revealed by SNPS play a role in risk, prevention and outcome for cancer

Post Your Comments:
*Name:
*Comment:
*Email:


(Date:4/5/2017)... Allen Institute for Cell Science today announces the launch ... dynamic digital window into the human cell. The website ... deep learning to create predictive models of cell organization, ... suite of powerful tools. The Allen Cell Explorer will ... resources created and shared by the Allen Institute for ...
(Date:3/30/2017)... 30, 2017  On April 6-7, 2017, Sequencing.com will ... hackathon at Microsoft,s headquarters in ... focus on developing health and wellness apps that provide ... the Genome is the first hackathon for personal ... largest companies in the genomics, tech and health industries ...
(Date:3/27/2017)... N.Y. , March 27, 2017  Catholic ... Information and Management Systems Society (HIMSS) Analytics for ... EMR Adoption Model sm . In addition, CHS ... of U.S. hospitals using an electronic medical record ... for its high level of EMR usage in ...
Breaking Biology News(10 mins):
(Date:7/17/2017)... ... 17, 2017 , ... Panitch Schwarze Belisario & Nadel ... BiG (Biomedical Innovation Group) annual meeting in China. , This year’s meeting, held ... T-cell) therapy, a rapidly developing highly personalized anti-cancer technology that involves removing some ...
(Date:7/16/2017)... ... July 16, 2017 , ... ... analytical instruments announced the launch of its new line of Rocking and Waving ... and waving shaker models (both analog and digital) for laboratory applications in a ...
(Date:7/14/2017)... , ... July 14, 2017 , ... ... EMS company . Sonic Manufacturing Technologies has installed a solar system on its ... a three-year period,” the President of Sonic, Kenneth Raab stated. The company’s proud ...
(Date:7/14/2017)... Liege, Belgium/ Denville, USA/ Martinsried, Germany (PRWEB) , ... ... ... today announced a newly developed standardized solution for sample preparation of proteins to ... Kit) and the Diagenode Bioruptor® sonication system. , The PreOmics iST Kit ...
Breaking Biology Technology:
Cached News: