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‘Zoomable’ map of poplar proteins offers new view of bioenergy crop

molecular map of poplar tree proteinsJan. 29, 2013 — Researchers seeking to improve production of ethanol from woody crops have a new resource in the form of an extensive molecular map of poplar tree proteins, published by a team from the Department of Energy's Oak Ridge National Laboratory. Populus, a fast-growing perennial tree, holds potential as a bioenergy crop due to its ability to produce large amounts of biomass on non-agricultural land. Now, a study by ORNL scientists with the Department of Energy’s BioEnergy Science Center has provided the most comprehensive look to date at poplar’s proteome, the suite of proteins produced by a plant’s cells. The study is featured on the cover of January’s Molecular & Cellular Proteomics. More...

MCP issues new guidelines and checklist for glycomic studies

MCP logoJan. 19, 2013 — The editors of Molecular & Cellular Proteomics have developed a new set of guidelines and a checklist for authors submitting manuscripts reporting mass spectrometric glycoconjugate analyses. The journal seeks your feedback on these guidelines and the checklist. Click here to learn more and to offer your feedback.

Natural killer cells — the body’s own patrol against viruses and tumors

A natural killer cell (top cell) encounters a cancer cell. Under the microscope the researchers are able to observe the high degree of expression of the newly discovered protein S10A6 (shown here in red) at the contact surface. (HZI/Scheiter)Jan. 14, 2013 — Scientists at the Helmholtz Centre for Infection Research (HZI) have analyzed for the first time all the proteins inside natural killer (NK) cells of healthy individuals. The newly discovered “protein repertoire” shows that these immune cells cannot only defend us against acute viral infections but they can also store information about earlier infections. The researchers have identified new proteins that help to determine NK cell condition. These findings may improve the basis for personalized therapies. They published their findings in the scientific journal Molecular & Cellular Proteomics. More... 

New protein tricks from an old enzyme

NATsDec. 18, 2012 — Small chemical groups are commonly attached to proteins in order to control their activity, localization, and stability. Now researchers from the Department of Molecular Biology, University of Bergen, and Ghent University (VIB) have revealed that a related protein modification, N-terminal propionylation, is conserved among eukaryotes. Interestingly, the NATs were uncovered to also be responsible for this newly discovered modification by transferring a propionyl-moiety from propionyl coenzyme A to various proteins. These results are now presented in Molecular & Cellular Proteomics. Thus, the NATs now emerge as multifunctional enzymes with a broad and diverse impact on the eukaryotic proteomes. More... 

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