ECR Seminar: Dr Anne Conibear; The University of Queensland
Monday, 19 April 4:00pm – 4:30pm
This seminar will be delivered via Zoom – Please email firstname.lastname@example.org for zoom link and password.
Speaker: Dr Anne Conibear, The University of Queensland
Host: Dr Jonathan Danon
Title: Structural subtleties of protein posttranslational modifications
Abstract: After a cell makes a new protein, its location, interactions with other proteins and finally destruction are often regulated by modifications to the protein. These posttranslational modifications control fundamental cellular processes such as reading genetic information and signalling between cells, and can lead to disease if they malfunction. However, unravelling the precise effects of posttranslational modifications on proteins is challenging because it can be difficult to obtain proteins bearing specific posttranslational modifications for structural and functional studies. In this research talk, I will discuss chemical biology tools that enable us to access specifically modified proteins. Illustrating one of these strategies, I will discuss a recent project in which we used chemical protein synthesis to make specifically modified and segmentally isotope labelled variants of a nucleosomal protein for nuclear magnetic resonance spectroscopy and functional studies. I aim to show how integrating chemical protein synthesis with structural biology allows us to gain new insights into the effects of protein posttranslational modifications on protein structure, dynamics and regulation of biological activity.
Anne Conibear completed her B.Sc.(Hons) and M.Sc. in Chemistry (2010) at Rhodes University, South Africa. She then moved to the University of Queensland, Australia for her PhD (2104) with Prof. David Craik, focusing on the structural characterisation and applications of cyclic disulfide-rich peptides from mammals, the theta-defensins. In 2014, she was awarded an Interdisciplinary Cancer Research (INDICAR) postdoctoral fellowship at the University of Vienna and worked on targeted immune-stimulating molecules for cancer therapy, collaborating with Syntab Therapeutics GmbH. She returned to UQ in 2019 with a UQ Development Fellowship at the School of Biomedical Sciences to start an independent project on the synthesis and structure of posttranslationally modified proteins.