Structural biology / solid-state NMR

Solid-state NMR on membrane protein systems and biopolymers

Virtually every biological process proceeds via membrane proteins or their complexes. It has been estimated that some 80% of cellular responses to its environment are mediated through membrane proteins, making them important drug targets. Magic angle spinning solid-state, NMR (MAS SS NMR) provides structural information about membrane proteins, difficult to obtain otherwise. MAS NMR methods can even describe the role of individual membrane constituents - ranging from proteins to lipids - and occurring interactions; information essential in many areas of life science.

We developed NMR approaches to elucidate the structural features behind the function of membrane proteins and their ligands, and their interplay with specific lipid membrane components, methods also suitable for other large biopolymers as mentioned above. In addition, we established MAS SS NMR methods to study at atomic resolution protein/ligand interactions with target membranes not only from the point of the protein but also from the perspective of the membrane lipids, a method useful for characterization of lipid-protein/ligand/drug interactions.

At our facility in Umeå scientists have access to modern MAS NMR equipment and expertise enables researchers in Sweden also to study other large biopolymers (not accessible by crystallography or solution NMR) such as amyloid fibers which are recognized as a new general protein state, aggregation processes, biopolymers such as cartilage or bones and even intact tissues where metabolic, spatial profiling can be used in a systems biology context.



Contact

Gerhard Gröbner
professor, Co-director, Swedish NMR Centre Umeå
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