The University of Arizona

SISTA Colloquium Details

Monday, March 21, 2011
12:00 p.m.
Gould-Simpson Bldg, Room 906
Light refreshments: 9th floor atrium - 11:50 a.m.

Speaker:  Matthew H. J. Cordes, Associate Professor
Department of Chemistry and Biochemistry
The University of Arizona

Title:  Evolution of Local Hydrophobicity in Protein Sequences

Abstract: The pattern of hydrophobic and polar amino acids in protein sequences is a major determinant of protein structure.  High local hydrophobicity in protein sequences can lead to loss of structural specificity as well as aggregate formation. Aggregation of the Ab peptide in Alzheimer's disease is a prime example of this effect.  Computational surveys of protein databases performed in our laboratory show that proteins avoid high local sequence hydrophobicity even in structural situations where it is likely to increase protein stability, and that local sequences exhibit a balance of hydrophobic and polar residues that is not seen in nonlocal sequences of comparable structure.