Project investigates new proteinfolding process

A new research project from our Department of Chemistry aims to overcome a fundamental problem in biochemistry, potentially allowing us to investigate the underlying causes of Alzheimer’s disease.

The Leverhulme Trust has announced funding of £129,566 for a project led by Dr Andrew Jamieson which will investigate a process to shape specific proteins using DNA templates.

Peptide b-sheets are the second most common structural motifs in proteins and play important roles in native proteins depending upon how they are folded into protein structures.

Manipulating the structures of these proteins has not previously been possible due to interactions at the molecular level. The process being developed by Dr Jamieson will use a DNA structure as a template to overcome this problem.

Proteins are one of the fundamental biomolecules required for life and fulfil a diverse range of key functions in the body. This process will allow scientists to chemically synthesise proteins with custom functionalities, providing them with a tool to investigate the biochemical mechanisms of Alzheimer’s disease and to use in biotechnology.