Thomas L. James

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Studies on the transmission of human (Hu) prions to transgenic (Tg) mice suggested that another molecule provisionally designated protein X participates in the formation of nascent scrapie isoform of prion protein (PrPSc). We report the identification of the site at which protein X binds to the cellular isoform of PrP (PrPC) using scrapie-infected mouse(More)
With an increasing interest in RNA therapeutics and for targeting RNA to treat disease, there is a need for the tools used in protein-based drug design, particularly DOCKing algorithms, to be extended or adapted for nucleic acids. Here, we have compiled a test set of RNA-ligand complexes to validate the ability of the DOCK suite of programs to successfully(More)
The scrapie prion protein (PrPSc) is formed from the cellular isoform (PrPC) by a post-translational process that involves a profound conformational change. Linear epitopes for recombinant antibody Fab fragments (Fabs) on PrPC and on the protease-resistant core of PrPSc, designated PrP 27-30, were identified using ELISA and immunoprecipitation. An epitope(More)
The prion diseases seem to be caused by a conformational change of the prion protein (PrP) from the benign cellular form PrPC to the infectious scrapie form PrPSc; thus, detailed information about PrP structure may provide essential insights into the mechanism by which these diseases develop. In this study, the secondary structure of the recombinant Syrian(More)
The scrapie prion protein (PrPSc) is the major, and possibly the only, component of the infectious prion; it is generated from the cellular isoform (PrPC) by a conformational change. N-terminal truncation of PrPSc by limited proteolysis produces a protein of approximately 142 residues designated PrP 27-30, which retains infectivity. A recombinant protein(More)
Poly(C)-binding proteins (PCBPs) are important regulatory proteins that contain three KH (hnRNP K homology) domains. Binding poly(C) D/RNA sequences via KH domains is essential for multiple PCBP functions. To reveal the basis for PCBP-D/RNA interactions and function, we determined the structure of a construct containing the first two domains (KH1-KH2) of(More)
Telomerase is a ribonucleoprotein (RNP) required for maintenance of telomeres. Although up-regulated telomerase activity is closely linked to the cellular immortality characteristic of late stage carcinogenesis, recently, mutations in the telomerase RNA gene in humans have been associated with dyskeratosis congenita and aplastic anemia, both typified by(More)
Retroviral genomes must dimerize to be fully infectious. Dimerization is directed by a unique RNA hairpin structure with a palindrome in its loop: hairpins of two strands first associate transiently through their loops, and then refold to a more stable, linear duplex. The structure of the initial, kissing-loop dimer from HIV-1, solved using 2D NMR, is bent(More)
A crucial step for transformation of the normal cellular isoform of the prion protein (PrP(C)) to the infectious prion protein (PrP(Sc)) is thought to entail a previously uncharacterized intermediate conformer, PrP*, which interacts with a template PrP(Sc) molecule in the conversion process. By carrying out (15)N-(1)H two-dimensional NMR measurements under(More)
The packaging signal of HIV-1 RNA contains a stem-loop structure, SL1, which serves as the dimerization initiation site for two identical copies of the genome and is important for packaging of the RNA genome into the budding virion and for overall infectivity. SL1 spontaneously dimerizes via a palindromic hexanucleotide sequence in its apical loop, forming(More)