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Mitochondrial cytochrome P450 27A1 (P450 27A1) catalyzes 27-hydroxylation of cholesterol, the first step in the alternative bile acid biosynthetic pathway. Although several crystal structures of P450s are known, no structural information is available for the mammalian, membrane-bound enzymes involved in the removal of cholesterol from the body. We prepared(More)
The current model of measles virus (MV) pathogenesis implies that apical infection of airway epithelial cells precedes systemic spread. An alternative model suggests that primarily infected lymphatic cells carry MV to the basolateral surface of epithelial cells, supporting MV shedding into the airway lumen and contagion. This model predicts that a mutant(More)
Using a multiple alignment of 175 cytochrome P450 (CYP) family 2 sequences, 20 conserved sequence motifs (CSMs) were identified with the program PCPMer. Functional importance of the CSM in CYP2B enzymes was assessed from available data on site-directed mutants and genetic variants. These analyses suggested an important role of the CSM 8, which corresponds(More)
The measles virus entry system, consisting of attachment (hemagglutinin, H) and fusion proteins, operates by means of a variety of natural and targeted receptors; however, the mechanism that triggers fusion of the viral envelope with the plasma membrane is not understood. Here, we tested a model proposing that the two heads of an H dimer, which are(More)
The mammalian AP-endonuclease (APE1) repairs apurinic/apyrimidinic (AP) sites and strand breaks with 3' blocks in the genome that are formed both endogenously and as intermediates during base excision repair. APE1 has an unrelated activity as a redox activator (and named Ref-1) for several trans-acting factors. In order to identify whether any of the seven(More)
The global prevalence of severe Clostridium difficile infection highlights the profound clinical significance of clostridial glucosylating toxins. Virulence is dependent on the autoactivation of a toxin cysteine protease, which is promoted by the allosteric cofactor inositol hexakisphosphate (InsP(6)). Host mechanisms that protect against such exotoxins are(More)
Similarities in sequences and 3D structures of allergenic proteins provide vital clues to identify clinically relevant immunoglobulin E (IgE) cross-reactivities. However, experimental 3D structures are available in the Protein Data Bank for only 5% (45/829) of all allergens catalogued in the Structural Database of Allergenic Proteins (SDAP,(More)
The VPg peptide, which is found in poliovirus infected cells either covalently bound to the 5'-end of both plus and minus strand viral RNA, or in a uridylylated free form, is essential for picornavirus replication. Combining experimental structure and mutation results with molecular modeling suggests a new mechanism for VPg uridylylation, which assigns an(More)
Apurinic/apyrimidinic endonuclease (APE-1) is essential for base excision repair (BER) of damaged DNA. Here molecular dynamics (MD) simulations of APE1 complexed with cleaved and uncleaved damaged DNA were used to determine the role and position of the metal ion(s) in the active site before and after DNA cleavage. The simulations started from an energy(More)
Homology modeling has become an essential tool for studying proteins that are targets for medical drug design. This paper describes the approach we developed that combines sequence decomposition techniques with distance geometry algorithms for homology modeling to determine functionally important regions of proteins. We show here the application of these(More)