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Tandem-repeat proteins: Folding, function, role in disease and therapeutic intervention

 

itzhaki-lauraDr. Laura Itzhaki - Group Leader

Darwin College

E-mail: lsi10@cam.ac.uk

Tel:+44 1223 334017

Fax:+44 1223 334100

Research summary

Our research focuses on a class of proteins with very distinctive architectures, known as tandem-repeat proteins. Our group and others have shown that the simple modular, one-dimensional architecture of tandem repeat proteins gives them distinctive properties compared with globular proteins and makes it uniquely straightforward to map the energetics of their structures and to rationally redesign their stability, folding and molecular recognition. This class of proteins is thus an exceptionally sensitive and versatile tool that we are now exploiting to dissect otherwise intractable cellular mechanisms. We are focusing on ankyrin, HEAT and ARM repeat proteins that play important roles in disease, in particular cancer, and we are using the insights we obtain to develop therapeutic strategies for targeting them; we are also exploring how to exploit the extraordinary design-ability of these proteins for biomedical and biotechnology applications.

Keywords

Tandem-repeat proteins, protein engineering, protein folding, protein design, protein-protein interactions, cancer therapeutics

Lab Members

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