Biochemistry Seminar: Douglas Turner
Wed, Sep 25
12:00 PM — 1:00 PM
Marshak160 Convent Ave
Douglas Turner, Univ of Rochester, will give a talk on "Folding RNA from Tetramers to Influenza."ABSTRACT: RNA viruses caused the three major pandemics of the 20th century, influenza, polio, and HIV. Despite the essential roles of RNA in almost all diseases and the vast amount of sequence information, the RNA structures that can potentially be therapeutic targets are largely unknown. The ultimate goal of the research described is to characterize the interactions directing RNA folding, and to use this knowledge to predict reliably the structures of RNA molecules from their sequences. The results can lead to rational design of therapeutics.
The power of methods for predicting secondary structure from sequence is being tested by experimentally determining the secondary structures of regions of influenza RNA predicted to fold into stable structures. Initial results have revealed an RNA conformational switch, which may regulate splicing.
Prediction of 3D structure is often done by using force fields to model intermolecular interactions. NMR and thermodynamic benchmarks consisting of unpaired tetramers and short duplexes will be described that provide simple tests of force fields.