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  • science news Two-dimensional high-throughput on-cell screening of immunoglobulins against broad antigen repertoires July 12

    Identifying high-affinity antibodies in human blood serum is a non-trivial task due to the extremely small number of circulating B-cells with the specified specificity. A team of scientists from the IBCh RAS proposed an effective approach that allows for the identification of high-affinity antibodies against pathogen proteins while simultaneously mapping epitopes, even in the absence of information about the structure of the pathogen's immunogens. To screen therapeutic antibodies in the blood of recovered donors, only the pathogen's transcriptome is needed to create a polypeptide library of antigens displayed on the surface of a bacteriophage. The work was published in the journal Communications Biology.

  • science news Synthesis of Substituted 1,2,4-Triazole-3-Thione Nucleosides Using E. coli Purine Nucleoside Phosphorylase July 4

    Scientists from the departments of biotechnology and structural biology (IBCH RAS) and Institute of the Chemistry of Plant Substances (Uzbekistan), and D. I. Ivanovsky Institute of Virology synthesized a series of substituted 1,2,4-triazole-3-thione nucleoside analogs and tested their antiviral activity against herpes simplex virus.

  • science news “Molecular portraits” characterized functional states of TRPV ion channels June 28

    TRPV ion channels realize a huge variety of functions in the human body participating in the temperature and pain sensation, cell division, calcium uptake. Researchers from IBCh RAS and Columbia University analyzed the structure of the key TRPV domain – the ion conducting pore. Using the original “dynamic molecular portrait” approach, they identified three major states of the pore that are common for all TRPVs, called α-closed, π-closed, and π-open. It was shown that the α-closed state is the most hydrophobic and always nonconducting. While the π-closed one is less stable and can easily transit to the open state, which has favorable hydrophobic properties for the ion conduction. The results were published in Communications Chemistry.

  • science news Immune system regulation for nanoparticle drug delivery. Breaking the endless cycle in nanomedicine June 14

    The journey of discovery in scientific research sometimes follows a familiar path: discover, admire, investigate, disappoint, and forget. Nevertheless, in some disciplines, it seems repeating many times. One of such cycles in the field of immune system blockade by nanoparticles is analysed in a recent article published in Nature Communications journal. Scientists from the Institute of Bioorganic Chemistry, Uppsala University and Boston University propose that advancements in nanomaterial development may finally disrupt this cycle, potentially introducing the method of macrophage blockade into clinical practice to improve cancer therapy.

  • science news Loss of Ability to regenerate Limbs in Higher Vertebrates: From Side Effects of Evolutionary Innovations to Gene Loss June 5

    Researchers from the Laboratory of Molecular Foundations of Embryogenesis at the GNC IBCh RAS have identified the main factors that rendered limb regeneration impossible in modern amniotes (reptiles, birds, and mammals). The authors suggested that after the ancestors of amniotes transitioned to land, their ability to regenerate limbs was suppressed by the side effects of various innovations that emerged at that time, which were necessary for successful colonization of land. This, in turn, stimulated the disappearance of many genes that ceased to participate in regeneration from that moment on. As a result, in modern amniotes, including humans, the inability to regenerate limbs became firmly fixed at the genomic level.

  • science news Innovative Contact Lenses with Metal-Organic Frameworks for Glaucoma Treatment May 13

    Researchers from the Institute of Bioorganic Chemistry of the Russian Academy of Sciences, Harvard University, Sechenov University, the Pasteur Institute, and other scientific institutions in Russia and abroad have proposed a new method for controlling elevated intraocular pressure, which is a major damaging factor in glaucoma. They have developed a new type of contact lenses that incorporate metal-organic frameworks (MOFs) for the controlled and prolonged release of brimonidine, a medication used to reduce intraocular pressure. This innovation was presented in the high-ranking scientific journal Aggregate, highlighting its innovative nature and potential impact on ophthalmological practice.

  • science news NMR spectroscopy reveals patterns and thermodynamic parameters of dimerization of β- hairpin antimicrobial peptides in the membrane April 10

    The staff of the Laboratory of structural biology of ion channels and the Science–Educational center for the first time studied the thermodynamics of the dimerization process of a β-hairpin peptide in the membrane-mimicking environment of detergent micelles using the example of the antimicrobial peptide (AMP) capitellacin of the marine polychaete Capitella teleta. The study also describes the mechanism of capitellacin action on bacterial membranes. The results of the work were published in the journal Biomolecules.

  • science news Human RPF1 and ESF1 in Pre-rRNA Processing and Assembly of Pre-Ribosomal Particles: A Functional Study March 6

    Ribosome biogenesis is a sophisticated time-ordered process, which adjusts the protein synthesis rate to consumption of nutrients and external stimuli. It begins with transcription of the ribosomal primary RNA precursor. 13.3 kB 47S (fig.) pre-rRNA processing is coupled with the sequential recruitment of ribosome biogenesis factors and non-coding RNAs as well as ordered coating of rRNA with ~80 ribosomal proteins during formation of the functional 60S and 40S ribosomal subunits.

  • science news The rational design of an efficient biocatalyst for the phosphoribosylation of antiviral pyrazine-2- carboxamide derivatives February 27

    The antiviral T-1105 and T-705 (Favipiravir) compounds are inactive prodrugs that undergo metabolic transformation into the active form through phosphoribosylation in vivo. The efficiency of this process in human cells is very low, making the production of the phosphoribosylated pyrazine-2-carboxamide derivatives in vitro is a worthy challenge.

  • science news The molecular mechanism of body axis induction in jawless vertebrates may differ from that described in gnathostomes February 26

    A significant proportion of modern ideas about the molecular mechanisms of body axis induction and differentiation of vertebrate embryos are based on studies of classical laboratory model objects - fishes, amphibians and mammals - that belong to only one of the two major clades of extant vertebrates - gnathostomes. In these animals, genes of Noggin family have been described as key embryonic inducers of the main body axis.