Featured Research

from universities, journals, and other organizations

How Complex Movements Of Enzymes Make Fat

Date:
February 20, 2009
Source:
Children's Hospital & Research Center at Oakland
Summary:
A groundbreaking study has revealed in great detail how enzymes in the cell cooperate to make fat.

A groundbreaking study has revealed in great detail how enzymes in the cell cooperate to make fat. These enzymes are integrated into a single molecular complex known as fatty acid synthase. This complex is regarded as a potential target for developing new anti-obesity and anti-cancer drugs.

Related Articles


Dr. Stuart Smith, at Children's Hospital Oakland Research Institute, collaborated with Drs. Edward Brignole and Francisco Asturias from The Scripps Research Institute in La Jolla, Calif. in a study published in the February 2009 edition of Nature Structural and Molecular Biology and featured on the cover of the journal.

"Fatty Acid Synthase is a remarkably complex structure. It contains all of the components needed to convert carbohydrates into fat," Dr. Smith explained. "We have suspected for some time that the enzyme complex is extremely flexible, which makes it difficult to analyze using X-ray crystallography. Last year the X-ray structure of the complex was solved by a group in Switzerland, but this structure provided only a snapshot of the complex in one of its many poses. We were able to use state-of-the-art electron microscopy to obtain images of the complex in many of its different conformations and assemble these images into a movie that displays the full range of motion of the components of the complex." The results reveal how enzymes that appear distantly located in the X-ray structure are able to make the contacts with each other needed for catalysis. The extraordinary swinging, swiveling and rolling motions of fatty acid synthase are represented on the cover of the journal in the form of a flamenco dancer.

Some pharmaceutical companies are focusing on inhibitors of fatty acid synthase because they are known to block the conversion of carbohydrates into fat and suppress appetite as well as slow the growth of cancer cells. Structural information garnered from X-ray and electron microscope images may aid in the design of more effective inhibitors that could be used therapeutically.


Story Source:

The above story is based on materials provided by Children's Hospital & Research Center at Oakland. Note: Materials may be edited for content and length.


Cite This Page:

Children's Hospital & Research Center at Oakland. "How Complex Movements Of Enzymes Make Fat." ScienceDaily. ScienceDaily, 20 February 2009. <www.sciencedaily.com/releases/2009/02/090211193820.htm>.
Children's Hospital & Research Center at Oakland. (2009, February 20). How Complex Movements Of Enzymes Make Fat. ScienceDaily. Retrieved December 27, 2014 from www.sciencedaily.com/releases/2009/02/090211193820.htm
Children's Hospital & Research Center at Oakland. "How Complex Movements Of Enzymes Make Fat." ScienceDaily. www.sciencedaily.com/releases/2009/02/090211193820.htm (accessed December 27, 2014).

Share This


More From ScienceDaily



More Health & Medicine News

Saturday, December 27, 2014

Featured Research

from universities, journals, and other organizations


Featured Videos

from AP, Reuters, AFP, and other news services

Healthier Lifestyles Could Prevent 4 In 10 Cancer Cases

Healthier Lifestyles Could Prevent 4 In 10 Cancer Cases

Newsy (Dec. 26, 2014) If patients had led healthier lifestyles, Cancer Research UK found about 40 percent of cancer cases could have been prevented. Video provided by Newsy
Powered by NewsLook.com
When Healthy Eating Becomes Dangerous

When Healthy Eating Becomes Dangerous

Newsy (Dec. 26, 2014) Experts say fad diets can lead to orthorexia, a disorder that can cause physical and emotional distress. Video provided by Newsy
Powered by NewsLook.com
FDA Issues New Warning About Pure Caffeine Powder Usage

FDA Issues New Warning About Pure Caffeine Powder Usage

Newsy (Dec. 24, 2014) The FDA cites two deaths this year linked to pure caffeine powder as warnings of the potentially fatal substance. Video provided by Newsy
Powered by NewsLook.com
Alarming CDC Lab Report Reveals Ebola Sample Mix-Up

Alarming CDC Lab Report Reveals Ebola Sample Mix-Up

Newsy (Dec. 24, 2014) The Centers for Disease Control and Prevention released a report claiming a lab tech in Atlanta might have been exposed to the Ebola virus. Video provided by Newsy
Powered by NewsLook.com

Search ScienceDaily

Number of stories in archives: 140,361

Find with keyword(s):
Enter a keyword or phrase to search ScienceDaily for related topics and research stories.

Save/Print:
Share:

Breaking News:

Strange & Offbeat Stories


Health & Medicine

Mind & Brain

Living & Well

In Other News

... from NewsDaily.com

Science News

Health News

Environment News

Technology News



Save/Print:
Share:

Free Subscriptions


Get the latest science news with ScienceDaily's free email newsletters, updated daily and weekly. Or view hourly updated newsfeeds in your RSS reader:

Get Social & Mobile


Keep up to date with the latest news from ScienceDaily via social networks and mobile apps:

Have Feedback?


Tell us what you think of ScienceDaily -- we welcome both positive and negative comments. Have any problems using the site? Questions?
Mobile: iPhone Android Web
Follow: Facebook Twitter Google+
Subscribe: RSS Feeds Email Newsletters
Latest Headlines Health & Medicine Mind & Brain Space & Time Matter & Energy Computers & Math Plants & Animals Earth & Climate Fossils & Ruins