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Archive for September, 2012


Ruoyan’s paper on “Diversification of the structural determinants of fibroblast growth factor-heparin interactions; implications for binding specificity” has been accepted for publication at the Journal of Biological Chemistry. The heart of her PhD thesis, this paper takes a hard look at the specificity of the interactions of six FGFs spanning five subfamilies with heparin and allied polysaccharides. She dissects the sites in the FGFs that are responsible for binding the sugars using the “Protect and Label” approach and the sites in the sugar that the FGFs binds using a combination of DSF, SRCD, biosensors and sugar libraries. As ever in biology, in important regulatory interactions there isn’t one binding site, instead these FGFs recognise what are best described as families of consensus sites in the sugar. Specificity in these consensus binding sites is elegantly illustrated by PCA and specificity maps to the evolutionary relationships of the FGFs.

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The Autumn-Winter lab meetings will start up soon, October 9. The only proviso is that the Orbit booking system allows us to book a room.

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