Format

Send to

Choose Destination
Nat Rev Genet. 2013 Aug;14(8):559-71. doi: 10.1038/nrg3540.

Evolutionary biochemistry: revealing the historical and physical causes of protein properties.

Author information

1
Institute of Ecology and Evolution, University of Oregon, Eugene, Oregon 97403, USA.

Abstract

The repertoire of proteins and nucleic acids in the living world is determined by evolution; their properties are determined by the laws of physics and chemistry. Explanations of these two kinds of causality - the purviews of evolutionary biology and biochemistry, respectively - are typically pursued in isolation, but many fundamental questions fall squarely at the interface of fields. Here we articulate the paradigm of evolutionary biochemistry, which aims to dissect the physical mechanisms and evolutionary processes by which biological molecules diversified and to reveal how their physical architecture facilitates and constrains their evolution. We show how an integration of evolution with biochemistry moves us towards a more complete understanding of why biological molecules have the properties that they do.

PMID:
23864121
PMCID:
PMC4418793
DOI:
10.1038/nrg3540
[Indexed for MEDLINE]
Free PMC Article

Supplemental Content

Full text links

Icon for Nature Publishing Group Icon for PubMed Central
Loading ...
Support Center