Albert Y. Lau

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Protein microarrays provide a powerful tool for the study of protein function. However, they are not widely used, in part because of the challenges in producing proteins to spot on the arrays. We generated protein microarrays by printing complementary DNAs onto glass slides and then translating target proteins with mammalian reticulocyte lysate. Epitope(More)
DNA N-glycosylases are base excision-repair proteins that locate and cleave damaged bases from DNA as the first step in restoring the genetic blueprint. The human enzyme 3-methyladenine DNA glycosylase removes a diverse group of damaged bases from DNA, including cytotoxic and mutagenic alkylation adducts of purines. We report the crystal structure of human(More)
Most cancer-associated BRCA1 mutations identified to date result in the premature translational termination of the protein, highlighting a crucial role for the C-terminal, BRCT repeat region in mediating BRCA1 tumor suppressor function. However, the molecular and genetic effects of missense mutations that map to the BRCT region remain largely unknown. Using(More)
K(2P)Ø, the two-pore domain potassium background channel that determines cardiac rhythm in Drosophila melanogaster, and its homologues that establish excitable membrane activity in mammals are of unknown structure. K(2P) subunits have two pore domains flanked by transmembrane (TM) spans: TM1-P1-TM2-TM3-P2-TM4. To establish spatial relationships in K(2P)Ø,(More)
Ionotropic glutamate receptors (iGluRs) are ligand-gated ion channels that mediate most excitatory synaptic transmission in the central nervous system. The free energy of neurotransmitter binding to the ligand-binding domains (LBDs) of iGluRs is converted into useful work to drive receptor activation. We have computed the principal thermodynamic(More)
Ionotropic glutamate receptors are ligand-gated transmembrane ion channels activated by the binding of glutamate. The free energy landscapes governing the opening/closing of the GluR2 S1S2 ligand-binding domain in the apo, DNQX-, and glutamate-bound forms are computed by using all-atom molecular dynamics simulations with explicit solvent, in conjunction(More)
For ion channels, the transmembrane potential plays a critical role by acting as a driving force for permeant ions. At the microscopic level, the transmembrane potential is thought to decay nonlinearly across the ion permeation pathway because of the irregular three-dimensional shape of the channel's pore. By taking advantage of the current structural and(More)
The NMDA receptor family of glutamate receptor ion channels is formed by obligate heteromeric assemblies of GluN1, GluN2, and GluN3 subunits. GluN1 and GluN3 bind glycine, whereas GluN2 binds glutamate. Crystal structures of the GluN1 and GluN3A ligand-binding domains (LBDs) in their apo states unexpectedly reveal open- and closed-cleft conformations,(More)
To help characterize the diversity in biological function of proteins emerging from the analysis of whole genomes, we present an operational definition of biological function that provides an explicit link between the functional classification of proteins and the effects of genetic variation or mutation on protein function. Using phylogenetic information,(More)
Photoswitched tethered ligands (PTLs) can be used to remotely control protein function with light. We have studied the geometric and conformational factors that determine the efficacy of PTL gating in the ionotropic glutamate receptor iGluR6 using a family of photoiosomerizable MAG (maleimide-azobenzene-glutamate) PTLs that covalently attach to the(More)