- Number 354 |
- January 16, 2012
Cells refuse to trust immature proteins
Scientists at PNNL examined
When transporting a cell's valuable electrons, the common microbe Shewanella oneidensis only trusts stable, mature proteins, according to scientists at DOE’s Pacific Northwest National Laboratory. Immature proteins are broken down before they can take up the task. This degradation suggests that protein traffic to the environment beyond the microbe is tightly regulated.
These results are a step toward learning how a microbe enables its proteins to transfer electrons to the outside world. This research ties into understanding microbial communities as a whole. In Shewanella’s case, the knowledge could aid in stabilizing toxins, mitigating their harm on people and environment. With other microbes, the insight could play a role in biofuel production.DOE’s Office of Biological and Environmental Research Genome Science Program funded this research.
[Kristin Manke, 509.372.6011,