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Tuesday, July 12, 2011


This story in ScienceDaily shows how finely tuned biological logic is. This split-second timing of a vital process in cellular life could never be achieved by hit-and-miss means, only by very precise logic.

Researchers from the RUB-Department of Biophysics of Prof. Dr. Klaus Gerwert have succeeded in providing evidence that a protein is capable of creating a water molecule chain for a few milliseconds for the directed proton transfer. The combination of vibrational spectroscopy and biomolecular simulations showed the proton-pump mechanism of a cell-membrane protein in atomic detail. The researchers demonstrated that protein-bound water molecules play a decisive role in the function.

Protein-bound water is decisive: specific proteins can transport protons from one side (uptake side) of the cell membrane to the other side (release side)--a central process in biological energy conversion.

Full story here.