Aitziber L. Cortajarena

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The folding/unfolding transitions of a series of designed consensus tetratricopeptide repeat proteins are quantitatively described by the classical one-dimensional Ising model, which thus represents a new folding paradigm for repeat proteins. Moreover, for the first time for any protein, a theoretical model predicts the folding/unfolding transition midpoint(More)
The structure and stability of repeat proteins has been little studied in comparison to the properties of the more familiar globular proteins. Here, the structure and stability of designed tetratricopeptide-repeat (TPR) proteins is described. The TPR is a 34-amino-acid motif which adopts a helix-turn-helix structure and occurs as tandem repeats. The design(More)
Iron oxide nanoparticles (IONPs) occupy a privileged position among magnetic nanomaterials with potential applications in medicine and biology. They have been widely used in preclinical experiments for imaging contrast enhancement, magnetic resonance, immunoassays, cell tracking, tissue repair, magnetic hyperthermia and drug delivery. Despite these(More)
Repeat proteins contain tandem arrays of small structural motifs. As a consequence of this architecture, they adopt non-globular, extended structures that present large, highly specific surfaces for ligand binding. Here we discuss recent advances toward understanding the functional role of this unique modular architecture. We showcase specific examples of(More)
Protein design aims to understand the fundamentals of protein structure by creating novel proteins with pre-specified folds. An equally important goal is to understand protein function by creating novel proteins with pre-specified activities. Here we describe the design and characterization of a tetratricopeptide (TPR) protein, which binds to the C-terminal(More)
Designer protein modules, which bind specifically to a desired target, have numerous potential applications. One approach to creating such proteins is to construct and screen libraries. Here we present a detailed description of using a split-GFP reassembly assay to screen libraries and identify proteins with novel binding properties. Attractive features of(More)
Photosensitizing flavoproteins have great potential as tags for correlative light and electron microscopy (CLEM). We examine the photostability of miniSOG mutants and their ability to photo-oxidize diaminobenzidine, both key aspects for CLEM. Our experiments reveal a complex relation between these parameters and the production of different reactive oxygen(More)
The genetically encodable fluorescent tag miniSOG is expected to revolutionize correlative light- and electron microscopy due to its ability to produce singlet oxygen upon light irradiation. The quantum yield of this process was reported as ΦΔ = 0.47 ± 0.05, as derived from miniSOG's ability to photooxidize the fluorescent probe anthracene dipropionic acid(More)
Escherichia coli alpha-hemolysin (HlyA) is a 107-kDa protein toxin with a wide range of mammalian target cells. Previous work has shown that glycophorin is a specific receptor for HlyA in red blood cells (Cortajarena, A. L., Goñi, F. M., and Ostolaza, H. (2001) J. Biol. Chem. 276, 12513-12519). The present study was aimed at identifying the(More)
Tetratricopeptide repeat (TPR) domains bind specific peptide ligands and are thought to mediate protein-protein interactions in a variety of biological systems. Here we compare peptide ligand-binding by several different TPR domains. We present specific examples that demonstrate that TPR domains typically undergo little or no structural rearrangement upon(More)