It’s tricky to refold membrane proteins! One particular challenge is to refold multi-chain β-barrels. So, often they have to be purified from native membranes. Our lab has a new paper out on folding the multi-chain β-barrel TolC which is the outer membrane part of an antibiotic resistance pump. Jimmy Budiardjo and Ayotunde Paul Ikujuni found that the trick to folding it was to concentrate it in the presence of a membrane mimetic. Undergraduate Andres Cordova saw that folding it this way in vitro maintained native function. Then Emre Firlar and Jason Kaelber showed that folding it this way in vitro had 2D class averages consistent with the native fold. The article is part of an Festschrift celebrating Steve White’s 80th birthday and his amazing contributions to understanding membrane protein folding.
Want to know how outer membrane proteins evolved? In our recent review Rik Dhar details all the mechanisms we know of for how these amplification events occurred. If nature used these methods to design outer membrane beta barrels, can we do the same?
We want to acknowledge your pain and exhaustion during this difficult time.
To all members of our community:
We cannot be silent in the face of the trauma being inflicted on the Black community. We affirm that Black lives matter. We will not be silent about racism in our community from the police or from members within the scientific community.
With respect to police brutality:
•We want police accountability to be overseen by a third party.
•We want Kansas City to have local control of its own police department.
•We want to ensure the continued legality of the videotaping police and of making those videos public.
•We want a demilitarization of the police, including a complete stop to the use of teargas.
•We want taxpayer funds to be reallocated from police to social workers and mental health facilities.
•We demand that the police limit the use of excessive force, especially for unarmed people. We demand that the police partake in extensive training on de-escalation techniques and lethal force be used as a last resort or not at all.
We hope that soon science and the broader community will be equitable to Black, Indigenous, and People of Color and we commit to working toward that goal.
Joanna Slusky Jimmy Budiardjo Jaden Anderson Gustavo Murillo-Espinoza
Daniel Montezano Jakki Deay Rebecca Bernstein Paul Ikujuni Ryan Feehan