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J Vis Exp. 2013 Jul 11;(77):e50159. doi: 10.3791/50159.

The multiBac protein complex production platform at the EMBL.

Author information

1
iberger@embl.fr

Abstract

Proteomics research revealed the impressive complexity of eukaryotic proteomes in unprecedented detail. It is now a commonly accepted notion that proteins in cells mostly exist not as isolated entities but exert their biological activity in association with many other proteins, in humans ten or more, forming assembly lines in the cell for most if not all vital functions.(1,2) Knowledge of the function and architecture of these multiprotein assemblies requires their provision in superior quality and sufficient quantity for detailed analysis. The paucity of many protein complexes in cells, in particular in eukaryotes, prohibits their extraction from native sources, and necessitates recombinant production. The baculovirus expression vector system (BEVS) has proven to be particularly useful for producing eukaryotic proteins, the activity of which often relies on post-translational processing that other commonly used expression systems often cannot support.(3) BEVS use a recombinant baculovirus into which the gene of interest was inserted to infect insect cell cultures which in turn produce the protein of choice. MultiBac is a BEVS that has been particularly tailored for the production of eukaryotic protein complexes that contain many subunits.(4) A vital prerequisite for efficient production of proteins and their complexes are robust protocols for all steps involved in an expression experiment that ideally can be implemented as standard operating procedures (SOPs) and followed also by non-specialist users with comparative ease. The MultiBac platform at the European Molecular Biology Laboratory (EMBL) uses SOPs for all steps involved in a multiprotein complex expression experiment, starting from insertion of the genes into an engineered baculoviral genome optimized for heterologous protein production properties to small-scale analysis of the protein specimens produced.(5-8) The platform is installed in an open-access mode at EMBL Grenoble and has supported many scientists from academia and industry to accelerate protein complex research projects.

PMID:
23892976
PMCID:
PMC3747712
DOI:
10.3791/50159
[Indexed for MEDLINE]
Free PMC Article

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