Press-room / Digest
Ras-dva: make regeneration great again
The researchers from Laboratory of molecular bases of embryogenesis recently hypothesised that the decrease of limb regeneration capacity in amniotes (reptiles, birds and mammals) could be caused by elimination in evolution of genes, encoding for important regulators of specific wound epithelium and blastema organization, which are used by excellent regenerating anamniotes (fish and amphibia). Using two anamniotic model organisms Danio rerio adult fishes and Xenopus laevis tadpoles the authors have shown the essential role of Ras-dva small GTPases in regulation of these processes, meanwhile their genes are eliminated in a stepwise manner during evolution till total absence in placental mammals. The obtained results support the hypothesis. The investigation is published in Scientific reports.
BrUSLEE – green fluorescent protein with the unique properties
Researchers from the Biophotonics lab of IBCH RAS (Anastasia Mamontova, Konstantin Lukyanov and Alexey Bogdanov) designed a new green fluorescent protein that combines high fluorescence brightness and short fluorescence lifetime. They used a semi-rational protein evolution approach. Their collaborators from Bach Institute of Biochemistry and Semenov Institute of Physical Chemistry helped with the time-resolved fluorescence analysis (FLIM) that allowed characterizing the physical properties of this perspective probe. Research has recently been published in the Scientific Reports.
Antibiotic from the bear's mouth
Scientists from the Laboratory of biocatalysis developed a new microfluidics-based ultrahigh-throughput technology for the “deep functional profiling” of microbial communities and used it to search for bacteria producing new antibiotics in the microbiome of the Siberian bear's oral cavity. This methodology allowed them not only to find the antibiotic amicoumacin, elucidating the mechanisms of its biosynthesis and self-resistance, but also to investigate the spectrum of its activity at the level of various bacterial communities. The results published in PNAS will find numerous applications in the field of antibiotic discovery and will help to solve the problem of antibiotic resistance.
Spider venom may help to stop neuronal death
Venoms of spiders and wasps contain acylpolyamines that act as high-affinity blockers of ionotropic receptors for glutamate, the main excitatory neurotransmitter in the human central nervous system (CNS). The first representative of acylpolyamines, argiopin from the venom of the orb-weaver spider Argiope lobata, was discovered in 1986 by Eugene Grishin’s team at IBCh RAS. Here, an international team of scientists, including a researcher from IBCh RAS, has used cryo-electron microscopy (cryo-EM) to determine the first atomic structure of an argiopin-glutamate receptor complex.