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J Am Chem Soc. 2008 Sep 24;130(38):12568-9. doi: 10.1021/ja8039426. Epub 2008 Aug 29.

Native conformation at specific residues in recombinant inclusion body protein in whole cells determined with solid-state NMR spectroscopy.

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Department of Chemistry, Michigan State University, East Lansing, Michigan 48824, USA.


Inclusion bodies are insoluble aggregates that are formed by bacteria to store excess recombinant protein produced during expression. The structure of the protein in inclusion bodies is poorly understood but it has been hypothesized that the protein may form misfolded beta sheet aggregates. This paper presents an isotopic labeling and solid-state nuclear magnetic resonance approach to determine the secondary structure of individual residues within a recombinant influenza virus "FHA2" protein in inclusion bodies. The inclusion bodies were studied either in the context of the unlysed hydrated E. coli cells or in the hydrated pellet formed from centrifugation of the material insoluble in the cell lysate. The native structure of FHA2 is predominantly helical and native helical structure was also observed for several specific residues in the inclusion body FHA2. This approach will be applicable to structural analysis of many inclusion body proteins and should provide useful information for optimizing solubilization and purification protocols of these proteins.

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