Structure determination of bHLH/PAS proteins

Mammalian bHLH/PAS proteins have traditionally been very difficult to express and purify, thus structural information is scant.

However, recent breakthroughs were achieved in solving partial structures for the bHLH/PAS heterodimers of Clock/BMAL, a protein complex which controls circadian rhythm, HIFa/ARNT and NPAS1 and 3 proteins.

This honours project will use analogous strategies to express, purify, crystallise and solve structures of the above mammalian bHLH/PAS proteins.

Dr John Bruning has previously determined structures for ligand binding domains of steroid hormone and nuclear receptors, a transcription factor family with interesting parallels to the set of bHLH/PAS proteins we study.

Pure, recombinant proteins will also be used in drug screening programs.

Murray Whitelaw


Professor Murray Whitelaw

Research area: Biochemical responses to environmental and physiological stress

Recommended honours enrolment: Honours in Molecular and Biomedical Science

Tagged in Honours projects - Molecular and biomedical science, Honours projects - Murray Whitelaw, Honours projects - Molecular and biomedical science: Biochemistry