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The spread of H5N1 avian influenza viruses (AIVs) from China to Europe has raised global concern about their potential to infect humans and cause a pandemic. In spite of their substantial threat to human health, remarkably little AIV whole-genome information is available. We report here a preliminary analysis of the first large-scale sequencing of AIVs,(More)
PDZ domains are abundant protein interaction modules that often recognize short amino acid motifs at the C-termini of target proteins. They regulate multiple biological processes such as transport, ion channel signaling, and other signal transduction systems. This review discusses the structural characterization of PDZ domains and the use of recently(More)
Focal adhesion kinase (FAK) is a nonreceptor tyrosine kinase whose focal adhesion targeting (FAT) domain interacts with other focal adhesion molecules in integrin-mediated signaling. Localization of activated FAK to focal adhesions is indispensable for its function. Here we describe a solution structure of the FAT domain bound to a peptide derived from(More)
The intracellular signaling molecule Dishevelled (Dvl) mediates canonical and non-canonical Wnt signaling via its PDZ domain. Different pathways diverge at this point by a mechanism that remains unclear. Here we show that the peptide-binding pocket of the Dvl PDZ domain can be occupied by Dvl's own highly conserved C-terminus, inducing a closed(More)
Smoothened (Smo) is a member of the Frizzled (FzD) class of G-protein-coupled receptors (GPCRs), and functions as the key transducer in the Hedgehog (Hh) signalling pathway. Smo has an extracellular cysteine-rich domain (CRD), indispensable for its function and downstream Hh signalling. Despite its essential role, the functional contribution of the CRD to(More)
Because of advances in the high-throughput screening technology, identification of a hit that can bind to a target protein has become a relatively easy task; however, in the process of drug discovery, the following hit-to-lead and lead optimization still remain challenging. In a typical hit-to-lead and lead optimization process, the analogues of the most(More)
BACKGROUND Wnt/β-catenin-mediated gene transcription plays important roles in a wide range of biological and pathophysiological processes including tumorigenesis where β-catenin-mediated transcription activity frequently elevates. TRABID, a deubiquitinase, was shown to have a positive Wnt/β-catenin-mediated gene transcription and hence holds a promise as a(More)
Enhancing the affinity of therapeutic T cell receptors (TCR) without altering their specificity is a significant challenge for adoptive immunotherapy. Current efforts have primarily relied on empirical approaches. Here, we used structural analyses to identify a glycine-serine variation in the TCR that modulates antigen sensitivity. A G at position 107(More)
Ursolic acid (UA) is a naturally bioactive compound that possesses potential anti-diabetic activity. The relatively safe and effective molecule intrigued us to further explore and to improve its anti-diabetic activity. In the present study, a series of novel UA analogues was synthesized and their structures were characterized. Their bioactivities against(More)
Frizzled is the earliest discovered glycosylated Wnt protein receptor and is critical for the initiation of Wnt signaling. Antagonizing Frizzled is effective in inhibiting the growth of multiple tumor types. The extracellular N terminus of Frizzled contains a conserved cysteine-rich domain that directly interacts with Wnt ligands. Structure-based virtual(More)