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:6/22/2016)... , June 22, 2016  The American College of Medical ... Show Executive Magazine as one of the fastest-growing trade ... 25-27 at the Bellagio in Las Vegas ... highest percentage of growth in each of the following categories: ... companies and number of attendees. The 2015 ACMG Annual Meeting ...
(Date:6/22/2016)... , June 22, 2016   ... management and verification solutions, has partnered with ... software solutions for Visitor Management, Self-Service Kiosks ... provides products that add functional enhancements to ... provides corporations and venues with an automated ...
(Date:6/22/2016)... On Monday, the Department of Homeland Security ... solutions for the Biometric Exit Program. The Request for ... (CBP), explains that CBP intends to add biometrics to ... United States , in order to deter visa ... Logo - http://photos.prnewswire.com/prnh/20160622/382209LOGO ...
Breaking Biology News(10 mins):
(Date:6/27/2016)... ... June 27, 2016 , ... ... on what they believe could be a new and helpful biomarker for malignant ... Click here to read it now. , Biomarkers are components in ...
(Date:6/27/2016)... ... 2016 , ... Parallel 6 , the leading software as a service ... Virtual Patient Encounter CONSULT module which enables both audio and video telemedicine communication ... , Using the CONSULT module, patients and physicians can schedule a face to face ...
(Date:6/27/2016)... ... June 27, 2016 , ... Newly created ... services and solutions to the healthcare market. The company's primary focus is on ... sales and marketing strategies that are necessary to help companies efficiently bring their ...
(Date:6/27/2016)... Hill, N.C. (PRWEB) , ... June 27, 2016 ... ... U.S. commercial operations for Amgen, will join the faculty of the University ... serve as adjunct professor of strategy and entrepreneurship at UNC Kenan-Flagler, with a ...
Breaking Biology Technology:
Cached News: