Mapping the Cycle

The Big Picture: Mapping Mutants to Conformations to Biochemical states

 

This part is still WAY under construction. However, in case anybody cares, here's what I am billing as the 'Conformational Conundrum': the emerging picture of how cs mutants we have isolated are turning out to suppress one another, and how a collection of suppressors interact with each of the cs (and other 'archetype') mutants.

THIS WAY to the current summary of our key genetic results--if you already know the codes and conventions, here's the data. If not, read on for an introduction to the symbols and players.

Introducing the Archetypes: Our cold-sensitive mutants comprise ~20 independantly isolated mutants. However, as we have characterized these biochemically (determining how the motors differ in function from the normal motor) and genetically (i.e. finding out how these motors can be 'repaired' by introducing further alterations/mutations) patterns keep appearing. The relationships between these groups suggest that there are only a small numbers of 'kinds of mutants' under the sun. This is an incredibly exciting finding, since we are trying to guess the number and nature of the 'states of the motor'--akin to figuring out how your car engine works by deducing that at one point, the valves open to let in the gas, at another, the spark plugs fire... by stringing together these 'snapshots' of the engine, you end up with a picture of the whole cycle. We are now suggesting that the mutants we have collected represent a limited number of snapshots of the motor--and by studying the snapshots, we can solve the puzzle. This link takes you to the groups we currently perceive.

Toggles: We're currently identifying key residues in the motor that, when altered, bias it to one of two alternative states. Details, logic and examples are here.

 

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Bruce Patterson
http://research.biology.arizona.edu/myosin