Logan S. Ahlstrom

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Alpha-synuclein (αS) is a 140-amino-acid protein that is involved in a number of neurodegenerative diseases. In Parkinson's disease, the protein is typically encountered in intracellular, high-molecular-weight aggregates. Although αS is abundant in the presynaptic terminals of the central nervous system, its physiological function is still unknown. There is(More)
We show here that computer game players can build high-quality crystal structures. Introduction of a new feature into the computer game Foldit allows players to build and real-space refine structures into electron density maps. To assess the usefulness of this feature, we held a crystallographic model-building competition between trained crystallographers,(More)
Variation among crystal structures of the λ Cro dimer highlights conformational flexibility. The structures range from a wild type closed to a mutant fully open conformation, but it is unclear if each represents a stable solution state or if one may be the result of crystal packing. Here we use molecular dynamics (MD) simulation to investigate the(More)
The significant variation among solved structures of the λ Cro dimer suggests its flexibility. However, contacts in the crystal lattice could have stabilized a conformation which is unrepresentative of its dominant solution form. Here we report on the conformational space of the Cro dimer in solution using replica exchange molecular dynamics in explicit(More)
The pH-sensing chaperone HdeA promotes the survival of enteropathogenic bacteria during transit through the harshly acidic environment of the mammalian stomach. At low pH, HdeA transitions from an inactive, folded, dimer to chaperone-active, disordered, monomers to protect against the acid-induced aggregation of periplasmic proteins. Toward achieving a(More)
Chaperones maintain a healthy proteome by preventing aggregation and by aiding in protein folding. Precisely how chaperones influence the conformational properties of their substrates, however, remains unclear. To achieve a detailed description of dynamic chaperone-substrate interactions, we fused site-specific NMR information with coarse-grained(More)
Effective data reduction methods are necessary for uncovering the inherent conformational relationships present in large molecular dynamics (MD) trajectories. Clustering algorithms provide a means to interpret the conformational sampling of molecules during simulation by grouping trajectory snapshots into a few subgroups, or clusters, but the relationships(More)
Challenges in determining the structures of heterogeneous and dynamic protein complexes have greatly hampered past efforts to obtain a mechanistic understanding of many important biological processes. One such process is chaperone-assisted protein folding. Obtaining structural ensembles of chaperone–substrate complexes would ultimately reveal how chaperones(More)
Understanding the fundamental biophysics behind protein-nanoparticle (NP) interactions is essential for the design and engineering bio-NP systems. The authors describe the development of a coarse-grained protein-NP model that utilizes a structure centric protein model. A key feature of the protein-NP model is the quantitative inclusion of the hydrophobic(More)
HdeA is a periplasmic chaperone that is rapidly activated upon shifting the pH to acidic conditions. This activation is thought to involve monomerization of HdeA. There is evidence that monomerization and partial unfolding allow the chaperone to bind to proteins denatured by low pH, thereby protecting them from aggregation. We analyzed the acid-induced(More)