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Curr Opin Chem Biol. 2002 Dec;6(6):809-15.

Incorporation of non-natural amino acids into proteins.

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Department of Bioscience and Biotechnology, Okayama University, 3-1-1 Tsushimanaka, 700-8530, Okayama, Japan.


Chemical and biological diversity of protein structures and functions can be widely expanded by position-specific incorporation of non-natural amino acids carrying a variety of specialty side groups. After the pioneering works of Schultz's group and Chamberlin's group in 1989, noticeable progress has been made in expanding types of amino acids, in finding novel methods of tRNA aminoacylation and in extending genetic codes for directing the positions. Aminoacylation of tRNA with non-natural amino acids has been achieved by directed evolution of aminoacyl-tRNA synthetases or some ribozymes. Codons have been extended to include four-base codons or non-natural base pairs. Multiple incorporation of different non-natural amino acids has been achieved by the use of a different four-base codon for each tRNA. The combination of these novel techniques has opened the possibility of synthesising non-natural mutant proteins in living cells.

[Indexed for MEDLINE]

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