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Protein Structure

Researchers discover previously undetected role of protein in peptide biosynthesis

Researchers at the University of Illinois Urbana-Champaign have discovered an unexpected reaction within a protein family. Their findings, which were recently published in the journal Nature Chemical Biology, could have dramatic implications for the development of future therapeutics.

Taking a Deep Look at Protein Structures that Contribute to Cancer

Thirteen years ago, when Lin-Feng Chen joined the Department of Biochemistry, he had his sights set on a specific protein that could both contribute to the growth of cancer and be a major factor in boosting the body’s immune system.

Decoding Life with MCB: Decoy Proteins

Life is extraordinary. So is the work we do. In a brand new podcast, Decoding Life with MCB, the School of Molecular and Cellular Biology at the University of Illinois Urbana-Champaign explores the impact of our students, faculty, staff, and alumni in each episode.

Uncovering the Critical Function of Drg1 in Protein Synthesis

Biochemistry researchers at the University of Illinois Urbana-Champaign are conducting trailblazing work on a group of conserved proteins that are directly related to abnormal cell proliferation and developmental and neurological disorders. In a new article published in Cell Reports, biochemistry...

Piecing together the LanCL puzzle

Researchers from the Carl R. Woese Institute for Genomic Biology, including several faculty in the School of Molecular & Cellular Biology, in collaboration with scientists at Oxford University have published a paper in Cell reporting the function of LanCL proteins. These proteins are found in...

Structure matters over sequence for cys-loop cell receptors

Cells communicate with each other by sending, receiving, and decoding signals. Signals that cannot cross the cell membrane directly – such as ions, water-soluble small molecules, and peptides – need to be detected by receptor proteins on the cell’s outer surface.

Researchers structurally characterize a dual-function transporter

The regulation of glutamate, an excitatory neurotransmitter abundant in the central nervous system, is critical for maintaining normal brain function. Glutamate regulation is achieved via extracellular transport of the amino acid. There are two primary classes of proteins involved in the transport...

Gut bacteria help digest dietary fiber, release important antioxidant

Dietary fiber found in grains is a large component of many diets, but little is understood about how we digest the fiber, as humans lack enzymes to break down the complex molecules. Some species of gut bacteria break down the fiber in such a way that it not only becomes digestible, but releases...

Researchers explore skeletal muscle regeneration at the molecular level

In a new study, University of Illinois professor Jie Chen and collaborators have uncovered novel molecular mechanisms of regulation in skeletal muscle regeneration.

Researchers find protein that suppresses muscle repair in mice

Researchers report that a protein known to be important to protein synthesis also influences muscle regeneration and regrowth in an unexpected manner. The discovery, reported in the Journal of Clinical Investigation, could one day lead to new methods for treating disorders that result in muscle...