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Current Protocols in Protein Science

Jongchan Woo, Jason Hong, Savithramma P Dinesh-Kumar
Bioluminescence resonance energy transfer (BRET) is a technique that analyzes protein-protein interactions (PPIs). The unique feature of BRET delineates that the resonance energy is generated by the resonance energy donor, Renilla luciferase by the oxidative decarboxylation of coelenterazine substrate. BRET is superior to FRET where issues such as autofluorescence, photobleaching, and light scattering can occur. Recently, BRET has been applied to design synthetic biosensors for monitoring autophagy in vivo and in vitro...
April 3, 2017: Current Protocols in Protein Science
Johanna Susan Rees, Xue-Wen Li, Sarah Perrett, Kathryn Susan Lilley, Antony Philip Jackson
This manuscript describes a new and general method to identify proteins localized into spatially restricted membrane microenvironments. Horseradish peroxidase (HRP) is brought into contact with a target protein by being covalently linked to a primary or secondary antibody, an antigen or substrate, a drug, or a toxin. A biotinylated tyramide-based reagent is then added. In the presence of HRP and hydrogen peroxide, the reagent is converted into a free radical that only diffuses a short distance before covalently labeling proteins within a few tens to hundreds of nanometers from the target...
April 3, 2017: Current Protocols in Protein Science
Huaying Zhao, Lisa F Boyd, Peter Schuck
This unit gives an introduction to the basic techniques of optical biosensing for measuring equilibrium and kinetics of reversible protein interactions. Emphasis is placed on description of robust approaches that will provide reliable results with few assumptions. How to avoid the most commonly encountered problems and artifacts is also discussed. © 2017 by John Wiley & Sons, Inc.
April 3, 2017: Current Protocols in Protein Science
Fanchi Meng, Vladimir Uversky, Lukasz Kurgan
Computational prediction of intrinsically disordered proteins (IDPs) is a mature research field. These methods predict disordered residues and regions in an input protein chain. More than 60 predictors of IDPs have been developed. This unit defines computational prediction of intrinsic disorder, summarizes major types of predictors of disorder, and provides details about three accurate and recently released methods. We demonstrate the use of these methods to predict intrinsic disorder for several illustrative proteins, provide insights into how predictions should be interpreted, and quantify and discuss predictive performance...
April 3, 2017: Current Protocols in Protein Science
Duojiao Ni, Peng Xu, Sean Gallagher
Immunoblotting (western blotting) is used to identify specific antigens recognized by polyclonal or monoclonal antibodies. This unit provides protocols for all steps, starting with solubilization of the protein samples, usually by means of SDS and reducing agents. Following solubilization, the material is separated by SDS-PAGE and the antigens are electrophoretically transferred to a membrane, a process that can be monitored by reversible staining with Ponceau S. The transferred proteins are bound to the surface of the membrane, providing access to immunodetection reagents...
April 3, 2017: Current Protocols in Protein Science
Paul T Wingfield
Protein synthesis is initiated by methionine in eukaryotes and by formylmethionine in prokaryotes. N-terminal methionine can be co-translationally cleaved by the enzyme methionine aminopeptidase (MAP). When recombinant proteins are expressed in bacterial and mammalian expression systems, there is a simple universal rule that predicts whether the initiating methionine will be processed by MAP based on the size of the residue adjacent (penultimate) to the N-methionine. In general, if the side chains of the penultimate residues have a radius of gyration of 1...
April 3, 2017: Current Protocols in Protein Science
Ankit Sinha, Javier Alfaro, Thomas Kislinger
Cells secrete biomolecules into the extracellular space as a way of intercellular communication. Secreted proteins can act as ligands that engage specific receptors-on the same cell, nearby cells, or distant cells-and induce defined signaling pathways. Proteins and other biomolecules can also be packaged as cargo molecules within vesicles that are released to the extracellular space (termed extracellular vesicles or EVs). A subclass of such EVs, exosomes have been shown to horizontally transfer information...
February 2, 2017: Current Protocols in Protein Science
Junfeng Ma, Gerald W Hart
O-linked β-D-N-acetyl glucosamine (O-GlcNAc) addition (O-GlcNAcylation), a post-translational modification of serine/threonine residues of proteins, is involved in diverse cellular metabolic and signaling pathways. Aberrant O-GlcNAcylation underlies the initiation and progression of multiple chronic diseases including diabetes, cancer, and neurodegenerative diseases. Numerous methods have been developed for the analysis of protein O-GlcNAcylation, but instead of discussing the classical biochemical techniques, this unit covers O-GlcNAc characterization by combining several enrichment methods and mass spectrometry detection techniques [including collision-induced dissociation (CID), higher energy collision dissociation (HCD), and electron transfer dissociation (ETD) mass spectrometry]...
February 2, 2017: Current Protocols in Protein Science
K Ilker Sen, Robert Hepler, Hirsh Nanda
Methionine oxidation is a prevalent modification found in proteins both in biological settings and in the manufacturing of biotherapeutic molecules. In cells, the oxidation of specific methionine sites can modulate protein function or promote interactions that trigger signaling pathways. In biotherapeutic development, the formation of oxidative species could be detrimental to the efficacy or safety of the drug product. Thus, methionine oxidation is a critical quality attribute that needs to be monitored throughout development...
February 2, 2017: Current Protocols in Protein Science
Xiaoting Luo, Jinzi Wu, Zhen Jin, Liang-Jun Yan
Gradient blue native polyacrylamide gel electrophoresis (BN-PAGE) is a well established and widely used technique for activity analysis of high-molecular-weight proteins, protein complexes, and protein-protein interactions. Since its inception in the early 1990s, a variety of minor modifications have been made to this gradient gel analytical method. Here we provide a major modification of the method, which we call non-gradient BN-PAGE. The procedure, similar to that of non-gradient SDS-PAGE, is simple because there is no expensive gradient maker involved...
February 2, 2017: Current Protocols in Protein Science
Nadine Pelletier, Serge Grégoire, Xiang-Jiao Yang
Lysine acetylation refers to addition of an acetyl moiety to the epsilon-amino group of a lysine residue and is important for regulating protein functions in various organisms from bacteria to humans. This is a reversible and precisely controlled covalent modification that either serves as an on/off switch or participates in a codified manner with other post-translational modifications to regulate different cellular and developmental processes in normal and pathological states. This unit describes methods for in vitro and in vivo determination of lysine acetylation...
February 2, 2017: Current Protocols in Protein Science
Gregory A Grant
This unit describes a number of methods for modifying cysteine residues of proteins and peptides. A general procedure for alkylation of cysteine residues in a protein of known size and composition with haloacyl reagents or N-ethylmaleimide (NEM) is presented, and alternate protocols describe similar procedures for use when the size and composition are not known and when only very small amounts of protein are available. Alkylations that introduce amino groups using bromopropylamine and N-(iodoethyl)-trifluoroacetamide are also presented...
February 2, 2017: Current Protocols in Protein Science
Matthew J Wither, Kirk C Hansen, Julie A Reisz
Recent technological advances in mass spectrometry (MS) have made possible the investigation and quantification of complex mixtures of biomolecules. The exceptional sensitivity and resolving power of today's mass spectrometers allow for the detection of proteins and peptides at low femtomole quantities; however, these attributes demand high sample purity to minimize artifacts and achieve the highest degree of biomolecule identification. Tissue preparation for proteomic studies is particularly challenging due to their heterogeneity in cell type, presence of insoluble biomaterials, and wide diversity of biomolecules...
November 1, 2016: Current Protocols in Protein Science
Fanchi Meng, Lukasz Kurgan
Secondary structure of proteins refers to local and repetitive conformations, such as α-helices and β-strands, which occur in protein structures. Computational prediction of secondary structure from protein sequences has a long history with three generations of predictive methods. This unit summarizes several recent third-generation predictors. We discuss their inputs and outputs, availability, and predictive performance and explain how to perform and interpret their predictions. We cover methods for the prediction of the 3-class secondary structure states (helix, strand, and coil) as well as the 8-class secondary structure states...
November 1, 2016: Current Protocols in Protein Science
Aaron Goldman, Sandra Harper, David W Speicher
Staining of blot membranes enables the visualization of bound proteins. Proteins are usually transferred to blot membranes by electroblotting, by direct spotting of protein solutions, or by contact blots. Staining allows the efficiency of transfer to the membrane to be monitored. This unit describes protocols for staining proteins after electroblotting from polyacrylamide gels to blot membranes such as polyvinylidene difluoride (PVDF), nitrocellulose, or nylon membranes. The same methods can be used if proteins are directly spotted, either manually or using robotics...
November 1, 2016: Current Protocols in Protein Science
Xing-Jun Cao, Benjamin A Garcia
Lysine methylation is a common protein post-translational modification dynamically mediated by protein lysine methyltransferases (PKMTs) and protein lysine demethylases (PKDMs). Beyond histone proteins, lysine methylation on non-histone proteins plays a substantial role in a variety of functions in cells and is closely associated with diseases such as cancer. A large body of evidence indicates that the dysregulation of some PKMTs leads to tumorigenesis via their non-histone substrates. However, most studies on other PKMTs have made slow progress owing to the lack of approaches for extensive screening of lysine methylation sites...
November 1, 2016: Current Protocols in Protein Science
Benjamin Webb, Andrej Sali
Comparative protein structure modeling predicts the three-dimensional structure of a given protein sequence (target) based primarily on its alignment to one or more proteins of known structure (templates). The prediction process consists of fold assignment, target-template alignment, model building, and model evaluation. This unit describes how to calculate comparative models using the program MODELLER and how to use the ModBase database of such models, and discusses all four steps of comparative modeling, frequently observed errors, and some applications...
November 1, 2016: Current Protocols in Protein Science
Kieran F Geoghegan
Chemical modification of amino groups in proteins serves a diversity of preparative and analytical purposes. The most prominent is to attach nonpeptide groups with useful properties to proteins. Examples of these groups include biotin for affinity capture and fluorescent dyes for detectability. A widely applied chemistry, and one for which many reagents are available, is reaction of the activated ester of a carboxylic acid (often a succinimidyl ester) with amino groups at mildly basic pH. Reductive alkylation using a carbonyl compound and a hydride-donating reducing agent is another valued reaction with multiple applications...
November 1, 2016: Current Protocols in Protein Science
Guoping Ren, Na Ke, Mehmet Berkmen
Escherichia coli continues to be a popular expression host for the production of proteins, yet successful recombinant expression of active proteins to high yields remains a trial and error process. This is mainly due to decoupling of the folding factors of a protein from its native host, when expressed recombinantly in E. coli. Failure to fold could be due to many reasons but is often due to lack of post-translational modifications that are absent in E. coli. One such post-translational modification is the formation of disulfide bonds, a common feature of secreted proteins...
August 1, 2016: Current Protocols in Protein Science
Norio Yamamoto, Yoko Yamashita, Yasukiyo Yoshioka, Shin Nishiumi, Hitoshi Ashida
Membrane proteins account for 70% to 80% of all pharmaceutical targets, indicating their clinical relevance and underscoring the importance of identifying differentially expressed membrane proteins that reflect distinct disease properties. The translocation of proteins from the bulk of the cytosol to the plasma membrane is a critical step in the transfer of information from membrane-embedded receptors or transporters to the cell interior. To understand how membrane proteins work, it is important to separate the membrane fraction of cells...
August 1, 2016: Current Protocols in Protein Science
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