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Posts tagged with "Biological News"

  • Analytical Chemistry

    Balancing Protons

    Catalytically active proteins come in many varieties, and you can classify them in many ways. When you look closely at their structures, one such scheme might be the “solid” ones versus the “delicately balanced” ones. In the first category would be things like carbonic anhydrase or acetylcholinesterase: they do their jobs mo… Read More
  • Analytical Chemistry

    Tiny Proteins

    Here’s another for the “things we just didn’t realize” file. This article is a nice look at “miniproteins” (also known as micropeptides), small but extremely important species that we’ve mostly missed out on due to both our equipment and our own biases in looking at the data. Other recent overviews are here… Read More
  • Biological News

    One Amino Acid Can Be Enough

    You know, we’re all mutants. No, not just those of us reading (or writing!) this web site, I mean all of us. We all have regions of our genome that are highly variable, of course – the sequences (often based on number of repeat markers) that are used in forensic DNA analysis or the mitochondrial… Read More
  • Biological News

    Resisting Protein Degradation: The Cells Fight Back

    With all the work going into targeted protein degradation now (recent review), we’re discovering a lot of things about it that weren’t apparent at first. To pick an obvious one, these things have several steps in their mechanism (binding to the target protein, binding to a ubiquitin ligase to form a ternary complex, ubiquitination of… Read More
  • Biological News

    The 2019 Medicine Nobel

    So we have the first prize of the 2019 Nobel season, Medicine/Physiology for William Kaelin Jr. (Dana-Farber), Peter Ratcliffe (Oxford), and Gregg Semenza (Johns Hopkins), for their work in cellular adaptation to oxygen levels. This was not one of the outcomes that was in the top of the betting range, but it sure wasn’t in the… Read More
  • Biological News

    N-Acetyl Cysteine: A Warning Shot

    I’ve highlighted several articles here over the years that cast doubt (to say the least) on the popular belief that Antioxidants Are Always Good For You. These other views do not seem to have penetrated the public consciousness yet, though, to judge by the way that foods and supplements are advertised. Today brings another example… Read More
  • Biological News

    Enter GlycoRNAs

    Layer upon layer! That’s what cell biology provides you with – just when you think you understand some area of it, things turn out to be more complex. I’m going on in this mode after looking over this new preprint from the Bertozzi lab at Stanford, which uncovers a new class of biomolecules that no… Read More
  • Biological News

    And Now For A Bit of Quantum Mechanics

    OK, today’s blog post is going to be even weirder than usual – we’re going to wander off into quantum mechanics. And into a particular borderland of it where have been a lot of interesting hypotheses and speculations, but plenty of hand-waving hoo-hah, so it’s important to realize the risks up front. But here we go. Read More
  • Biological News

    Huntington’s and Other Repeat Disorders: DNA, Not Protein?

    As many will know, there is a whole set of what are termed “polyglutamine repeat disorders“, which themselves are a large part of a bigger set of trinucleotide repeat disorders. Huntington’s disease is a well-known one: the gene (HTT) for the huntingtin protein ends up with a series of CAG nucleotide repeats, which after translati… Read More
  • Analytical Chemistry

    We Have the Touch

    OK, let’s get reductionist, and let’s see why getting reductionist often works so well. How do you know when your finger has touched something? You feel it – but how do you feel it? Your nerves have sent an impulse to your brain, which interprets it as something having physically come into contact with your… Read More