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Molecular chaperones of the Hsp70 type transiently sequester unfolded segments of proteins and promote their correct folding. Target peptides were labeled with an environmentally sensitive fluorophore so that their binding to the molecular chaperone DnaK of Escherichia coli could be followed in real time. The two-step process was characterized by relaxation(More)
Prion-related diseases are accompanied by neurodegeneration, astroglial proliferation and formation of proteinase K-resistant aggregates of the scrapie isoform of the prion protein (PrPSc). The synthetic PrP fragment 106-126 was reported to be neurotoxic towards cultured rat hippocampal neurons (Forloni, G., Angeretti, N., Chiesa, R., Monzani, E., Salmona,(More)
While the toxicity of metals and metalloids, like arsenic, cadmium, mercury, lead and chromium, is undisputed, the underlying molecular mechanisms are not entirely clear. General consensus holds that proteins are the prime targets; heavy metals interfere with the physiological activity of specific, particularly susceptible proteins, either by forming a(More)
Consistent high-quality of papers published in ''Toxicology in Vitro'' can only be maintained with the cooperation and dedication of a number of expert referees. The Editors would like to thank all those who have donated the hours necessary to review, evaluate and comment on manuscripts; their conscientious efforts have enabled the journal to maintain its(More)
BACKGROUND The introduction and maintenance of plasmids in cells is often associated with a reduction of growth rate. The reason for this growth reduction is unclear in many cases. METHODOLOGY/PRINCIPAL FINDINGS We observed a surprisingly large reduction in growth rate of about 50% of Methylobacterium extorquens AM1 during methylotrophic growth in the(More)
Faster growing and more virulent strains of methicillin resistant Staphylococcus aureus (MRSA) are increasingly displacing highly resistant MRSA. Elevated fitness in these MRSA is often accompanied by decreased and heterogeneous levels of methicillin resistance; however, the mechanisms for this phenomenon are not yet fully understood. Whole genome(More)
Methylobacterium extorquens AM1 is a facultative methylotrophic Alphaproteobacterium and has been subject to intense study under pure methylotrophic as well as pure heterotrophic growth conditions in the past. Here, we investigated the metabolism of M. extorquens AM1 under mixed substrate conditions, i.e., in the presence of methanol plus succinate. We(More)
The causative and infectious agent of the transmissible spongiform encephalopathies, e.g. bovine spongiform encephalopathy in cattle or variant Creutzfeldt-Jakob disease in humans, is a pathogenic form of the scrapie prion protein (PrP(Sc)) generated by a conformational rearrangement in the normal cellular prion protein (PrP(C)). Anti-PrP antibodies have(More)
Heat-shock proteins are highly immunogenic. Complexed with an antigen, they act as adjuvants, inducing a humoral and cellular immune response against both the antigen and the chaperone. In this study, we produced an Hsp70-supported vaccine to induce the generation of antibodies against amyloid-beta (Abeta) peptides, the major constituent of beta-amyloid(More)
Tyrosine phenol-lyase (TPL), which catalyzes the beta-elimination reaction of L-tyrosine, and aspartate aminotransferase (AspAT), which catalyzes the reversible transfer of an amino group from dicarboxylic amino acids to oxo acids, both belong to the alpha-family of vitamin B6-dependent enzymes. To switch the substrate specificity of TPL from L-tyrosine to(More)