HOME >> BIOLOGY >> NEWS
Doing nature one better: Expanding the genetic code in living mammalian cells

La Jolla, CA Researchers at the Salk Institute for Biological Studies have developed a novel strategy to expand the natural repertoire of 20 amino acids in mammalian cells, including neurons, and successfully inserted tailor-made amino acids into proteins in these cells. In a powerful demonstration of the methods versatility, they then used unnatural amino acids to determine the operating mechanism of the molecular gates that regulate the movement of potassium ions in and out of nerve cells.

In the past, this type of engineering has been mainly restricted to bacteria or in yeast, and it was very challenging to efficiently incorporate unnatural amino acids in mammalian cells. But most biomedical questions have to be studied in the cells of higher organisms and animal models to arrive at meaningful answers, explains Lei Wang, Ph.D., an assistant professor in the Chemical Biology and Proteomics Laboratory, who led the current study published in the July issue of Nature Neuroscience.

The genetic code, which is shared by plants, animals and bacteria, includes 64 codons encoding 20 different amino acids and three stop signals. Being able to expand the code and insert non-natural amino not only greatly enhances researchers' ability and precision, but also provides novel tools for addressing challenging questions insurmountable with conventional means.

We had tried using conventional mutagenesis to introduce mutations into the potassium channel but it didnt give us any answers, says Paul A. Slesinger, Ph.D., an associate professor in the Peptide Biology Laboratory, who collaborated with Wang on the current study. Being able to incorporate bulky unnatural amino acids into living mammalian cells really made all the difference, he adds.

During his graduate studies, Wang pioneered a method to accommodate additional amino acids in bacteria. His approach mimicked the strategy every cell relies on to incorporate conventional amino acids
'"/>

Contact: Gina Kirchweger
kirchweger@salk.edu
858-453-4100, ext. 1340
Salk Institute
1-Jul-2007


Page: 1 2 3

Related biology news :

1. Doing it right: New book helps biologists conduct rigorous and reliable research
2. Ecologists work to link kids with nature
3. In nature, proteins sweep up nanoparticles
4. Pesticides choke pathway for nature to produce nitrogen for crops
5. Genomic signatures identify targeted therapies for lung cancer
6. Life-long learning -- nature provides natural inspiration for education
7. New synthetic self-assembling macromolecules mimic nature
8. Researchers untangle nature of regressive evolution in cavefish
9. DNA gives new perspectives to understand the mysteries of nature
10. Manipulating nature: Scientists query wildlife birth-control method
11. Beyond the DNA: Chemical signatures reveal genetic switches in the genome

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


(Date:8/31/2018)... ... August 30, 2018 , ... ... as a component of drug discovery programs. Longer-target engagement can result in improved ... low throughput, require expensive instrumentation, or require the alteration of the molecules involved. ...
(Date:8/29/2018)... Calif. (PRWEB) , ... August 28, 2018 , ... ... cluster and cloud infrastructure automation software, announced that Data In Science Technologies has ... The HudsonAlpha Institute for Biotechnology is a non-profit genomics and genetics research ...
(Date:8/29/2018)... ... August 29, 2018 , ... ... non-invasive technology to identify specific chromosomal abnormalities using morphological assessment through artificial ... and Australia-based Life Whisperer suggests that artificial intelligence (AI) ...
Breaking Biology News(10 mins):
(Date:9/15/2018)... ... ... recognized public accounting and consulting firm Cherry Bekaert LLP (“the Firm”) congratulates ... her appointment to Launch Tennessee’s Board of Directors. , Patrick has been ... Nashville practice in December 2017 . In this role, she oversees the execution of ...
(Date:9/12/2018)... ... 2018 , ... Sterlitech Corporation, a global leader in custom ... Fluid Technology Solutions (FTS H2O) to their offering of filtration products. , ... (CTA) material. The highly hydrophilic nature of the CTA FO membranes favors proper ...
(Date:9/7/2018)... ... September 06, 2018 , ... Cognition® Corporation , a ... for its upcoming user conference. , This year NAVIGATE2018 —the annual ... and approaches to regulatory compliance and quality management. , “We’ve got a stellar ...
(Date:8/31/2018)... ... August 29, 2018 , ... A recent expedition ... Southampton and the Institute of Industrial Science, the University of Tokyo, demonstrated how ... the exploration and study of hard to reach deep sea ecosystems, like intermittently ...
Breaking Biology Technology:
Cached News: