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Trends Biotechnol. 2015 Feb;33(2):101-10. doi: 10.1016/j.tibtech.2014.11.010. Epub 2014 Dec 20.

Synthetic protein switches: design principles and applications.

Author information

1
The University of Queensland, Institute for Molecular Biosciences, Brisbane, QLD 4072, Australia. Electronic address: v.stein@imb.uq.edu.au.
2
The University of Queensland, Institute for Molecular Biosciences, Brisbane, QLD 4072, Australia. Electronic address: k.alexandrov@uq.edu.au.

Abstract

Protein switches are ubiquitous in biological signal transduction systems, enabling cells to sense and respond to a variety of molecular queues in a rapid, specific, and integrated fashion. Analogously, tailor-engineered protein switches with custom input and output functions have become invaluable research tools for reporting on distinct physiological states and actuating molecular functions in real time and in situ. Here, we analyze recent progress in constructing protein-based switches while assessing their potential in the assembly of defined signaling motifs. We anticipate such systems will ultimately pave the way towards a new generation of molecular diagnostics and facilitate the construction of artificial signaling systems that operate in parallel to the signaling machinery of a host cell for applications in synthetic biology.

KEYWORDS:

biosensors; molecular diagnostics; protein engineering; protein switches; signaling; synthetic biology

PMID:
25535088
DOI:
10.1016/j.tibtech.2014.11.010
[Indexed for MEDLINE]

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