Capturing protein complexes in action
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A technique based on protein behaviour at different temperatures is shedding light on the mysterious world of protein complexes.
An international team, including researchers from Nanyang Technological University, have developed a technique called thermal proximity coaggregation to capture protein complexes in action. The technology assumes that proteins bound together in a complex will have the same melting curve — the behaviour of a protein in solution as it heats up — even if they have different melting curves when apart.
Researchers worked out the melting curves of 7,693 human proteins, then looked at the melting curves of 350 well-known human protein complexes. They found that the melting curves of the proteins in the complexes were very similar, suggesting that proteins with similar melting curves are more likely to form complexes.
- Science 359, 1170–1177 (2018). doi: 10.1126/science.aan0346