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Helicases are a ubiquitous class of enzymes involved in nearly all aspects of DNA and RNA metabolism. Despite recent progress in understanding their mechanism of action, limited resolution has left inaccessible the detailed mechanisms by which these enzymes couple the rearrangement of nucleic acid structures to the binding and hydrolysis of ATP. Observing(More)
The faithful relay and timely expression of genetic information depend on specialized molecular machines, many of which function as nucleic acid translocases. The emergence over the last decade of single-molecule fluorescence detection and manipulation techniques with nm and Å resolution and their application to the study of nucleic acid translocases are(More)
Nonhexameric helicases use adenosine triphosphate (ATP) to unzip base pairs in double-stranded nucleic acids (dsNAs). Studies have suggested that these helicases unzip dsNAs in single-base pair increments, consuming one ATP molecule per base pair, but direct evidence for this mechanism is lacking. We used optical tweezers to follow the unwinding of(More)
Previous evidence showed that administration of d-galactose (d-gal) increased ROS production and resulted in impairment of cholinergic system. Troxerutin, a natural bioflavonoid, has been reported to have many benefits and medicinal properties. In this study, we evaluated the protective effect of troxerutin against d-gal-induced impairment of cholinergic(More)
Evidence suggests that obesity-induced cognitive impairments are driven by in brain inflammatory responses and inflammation-mediated brain insulin resistance. Ursolic acid (UA), a triterpenoid compound, has many important biological functions, including antioxidant and anti-inflammatory activities. Here, we evaluated the effect of UA on cognitive impairment(More)
RNA helicases regulate virtually all RNA-dependent cellular processes. Although much is known about helicase structures, very little is known about how they deal with barriers in RNA and the factors that affect their processivity. The hepatitis C virus encodes NS3, an RNA helicase that is essential for viral RNA replication. We have used optical tweezers to(More)
Using optical tweezers, we have measured the effect of monovalent cation concentration and species on the folding free energy of five large (49-124 nt) RNA hairpins, including HIV-1 TAR and molecules approximating A.U and G.C homopolymers. RNA secondary structure thermodynamics are accurately described by a model consisting of nearest-neighbor interactions(More)
Optical tweezers use the momentum of photons to trap and manipulate microscopic objects, contact-free, in three dimensions. Although this technique has been widely used in biology and nanotechnology to study molecular motors, biopolymers and nanostructures, its application to study viruses has been very limited, largely due to their small size. Here, using(More)
The inflammasome is a multi-protein complex which when activated regulates caspase-1 activation and IL-1β secretion. Inflammasome activation is mediated by NLR proteins that respond to stimuli. Among NLRs, NLRP3 senses the widest array of stimuli. NLRP3 inflammasome plays an important role in the development of many cancer types. However, Whether NLRP3(More)
Single-molecule real time trajectories are embedded in high noise. To extract kinetic or dynamic information of the molecules from these trajectories often requires idealization of the data in steps and dwells. One major premise behind the existing single-molecule data analysis algorithms is the gaussian 'white' noise, which displays no correlation in time(More)