Yeast Glycogen Deficient Mutants Unlock Fascinating Intracellular Machinery

November 20, 2020

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Target Audience

Des Moines University faculty, staff, and students.

Purpose

Yeast genetics is an awesome avenue to explore disease pathology and study complex signal transduction pathways. Our investigation of yeast mutants defective in glycogen synthesis allowed us to learn about metabolic diseases, aberrant control of cell division in cancer cells, and interesting atomic-level biophysics. Two examples will show how our lab has exploited these techniques over several years.

  • First, a yeast glycogen branching enzyme mutant allowed us to isolate the orthologous human gene, which was subsequently used to diagnose and treat children afflicted with a lethal glycogen storage disease.
  • Second, studies of an unstructured regulator of a conserved protein phosphatase reveal novel mechanisms of protein regulation by phosphorylation.

Both examples illustrate how clever manipulation of a model organism and high performance supercomputers can be used as a tools to understand and explore basic life processes.

Learning Objectives

  • Explain how the phenotype of mutants can be exploited to comprehend protein function inside a cell. 
  • Design a scheme to study dynamic protein movements and how they modulate protein function.
Course summary
Available credit: 
  • 1.00 CE Contact Hour(s)
Course opens: 
11/20/2020
Course expires: 
11/20/2020
Event starts: 
11/20/2020 - 12:00pm
Event ends: 
11/20/2020 - 1:00pm
Cost:
$0.00
Rating: 
0

John Cannon, PhD
Associate Professor, Director and Chair Genetics Area Program, University of Missouri

Biography

Available Credit

  • 1.00 CE Contact Hour(s)

Price

Cost:
$0.00
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