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Naturwissenschaften. 2002 Sep;89(9):381-90. Epub 2002 Aug 24.

Bridging the gap between cell biology and organic chemistry: chemical synthesis and biological application of lipidated peptides and proteins.

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1
Department of Chemical Biology, Max-Planck-Institut für Molekulare Physiologie, Dortmund, Germany.

Abstract

We have developed a basic concept for studying cell biological phenomena using an interdisciplinary approach starting from organic chemistry. Based on structural information available for a given biological phenomenon, unsolved chemical problems are identified. For their solution, new synthetic pathways and methods are developed, which reflect the state of the art in synthesising lipidated peptide conjugates. These compounds are used as molecular probes for the investigation of biological phenomena that involve both the determination of biophysical properties and cell biological studies. The interplay between organic synthesis, biophysics and cell biology in the study of protein lipidation may open up new and alternative opportunities to gain knowledge about the biological phenomenon that could not be obtained by employing biological techniques alone. This fruitful combination is highlighted using the Ras protein as an outstanding example. Included herein is: the development of methods for the synthesis of Ras-derived peptides and fully functional Ras proteins, the determination of the biophysical properties, in particular the ability to bind to model membranes, and finally the use of synthetic Ras peptides and proteins in cell biological experiments.

PMID:
12435088
DOI:
10.1007/s00114-002-0354-7
[Indexed for MEDLINE]
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