research advances

Synopses of important developments in the field of structural biology and structural genomics, including advances from the Protein Structure Initiative. The featured articles and technical highlights are specially written for the Structural Biology Knowledgebase, while the research highlights are taken from NPG publications.

March 2009

  • featured articles

    • Death clusters

      The structure of the Fas–FADD death domain complex reveals how it switches on apoptosis solely through oligomerization and clustering.

      Nature, doi: 10.1038/nature07606

    • Anthrax stealth molecule

      Bacillus anthracis relies on an unusual metabolite to evade human innate immunity and to be fully virulent in the host.

      Proc. Natl Acad. Sci. USA 105, 17133-17138 (2008)

  • research highlights

    • Structure watch

      Cell 135, 1213-1223 (2008)

    • Sequencing in a flash

      A new system capable of simultaneously monitoring thousands of individual polymerase enzymes enables accurate, multiplex DNA sequencing in real time.

      Science 323, 133-138 (2009)

  • technical highlights

    • Protein nanopores

      Ultra high-speed DNA sequencing could be a step nearer as the protein channel MpsA is found to be an excellent nanopore.

      Proc. Natl. Acad. Sci. USA 105, 20647-20652 (2008)

    • Chaperone-assisted crystallography

      Addition of single-domain antibodies to target proteins increases crystallization success and provides phasing information, making the structure easier to solve.

      Prot. Sci. 17, 1175-1187 (2008)

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