Structure and dynamics of membrane proteins by liquid-state, solid-state, and in-cell NMR

Laurent Catoire, Dror Warschawski

The structural and dynamical study of membrane proteins by NMR can be tackled by two approaches that we pursue in parallel : liquid-state NMR and solid-state NMR.

In the first case, the proteins are kept in solution using detergents or surfactants developed in the laboratory. The objects obtained allow the study of the structure of membrane proteins or their ligands. In addition, the size of the objects requires the development of advanced technology in NMR.

In the case of solid-state NMR, membrane proteins are studied in their native environment, the hydrated lipid membrane, which is particularly important in the case of proteins for which the activity depends on the interaction with the lipids. In order to obtain high resolution spectra, the sample must be studied using the technique of Magic Angle Spinning.

A new direction we are developping in the laboratory is in-cell NMR where our sample is made of intact cells or intact cell membranes and we focus on particular over-expressed membrane proteins or soluble partners by either solid- or liquid-state NMR.

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