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Biophys Chem. 2003 Sep;105(2-3):361-70.

Structural genomics of Mycobacterium tuberculosis: a preliminary report of progress at UCLA.

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1
UCLA-DOE Center for Genomics and Proteomics, UCLA Box 951570, Los Angeles, CA 90095-1570, USA.

Abstract

The growing list of fully sequenced genomes, combined with innovations in the fields of structural biology and bioinformatics, provides a synergy for the discovery of new drug targets. With this background, the TB Structural Genomics Consortium has been formed. This international consortium is comprised of laboratories from 31 universities and institutes in 13 countries. The goal of the consortium is to determine the structures of over 400 potential drug targets from the genome of Mycobacterium tuberculosis and analyze their structures in the context of functional information. We summarize the efforts of the UCLA consortium members. Potential drug targets were selected using a variety of bioinformatics methods and screened for certain physical and species-specific properties to yield a starting group of protein targets for structure determination. Target determination methods include protein phylogenetic profiles and Rosetta Stone methods, and the use of related biochemical pathways to select genes linked to essential prokaryotic genes. Criteria imposed on target selection included potential protein solubility, protein or domain size, and targets that lack homologs in eukaryotic organisms. In addition, some protein targets were chosen that are specific to M. tuberculosis, such as PE and PPE domains. Thus far, the UCLA group has cloned 263 targets, expressed 171 proteins and purified 40 proteins, which are currently in crystallization trials. Our efforts have yielded 13 crystals and eight structures. Seven structures are summarized here. Four of the structures are secreted proteins: antigen 85B; MPT 63, which is one of the three major secreted proteins of M. tuberculosis; a thioredoxin derivative Rv2878c; and potentially secreted glutamate synthetase. We also report the structures of three proteins that are potentially essential to the survival of M. tuberculosis: a protein involved in the folate biosynthetic pathway (Rv3607c); a protein involved in the biosynthesis of vitamin B5 (Rv3602c); and a pyrophosphatase, Rv2697c. Our approach to the M. tuberculosis structural genomics project will yield information for drug design and vaccine production against tuberculosis. In addition, this study will provide further insights into the mechanisms of mycobacterial pathogenesis.

PMID:
14499904
[Indexed for MEDLINE]
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