Corporate Banner
Satellite Banner
Technology
Networks
Scientific Communities
 
Become a Member | Sign in
Home>News>This Article
  News
Return

New Path Discovered for Future Generation of Glucose-Measuring Biosensors

Published: Thursday, January 17, 2013
Last Updated: Thursday, January 17, 2013
Bookmark and Share
Researchers have opened a new pathway for the future development of biosensors that enable measuring the glucose in the blood.

To this end, a complex scientific process has been developed which has called into question a dominant paradigm amongst the scientific community with respect to the mechanisms of binding and communication between proteins.

The mechanisms of communication at subcellular level are based on the interaction between proteins or between proteins and metabolites and other ligands. These phenomena help to explain the immense majority of protein functions in living organisms, but it is essential to this end that each protein knows exactly to which ligand it has to bind.

To date it has been widely accepted within the scientific community that there was a double binding mechanism between proteins, differentiated and isolated like two independent processes: some proteins bind with just one mechanism known as ‘induced fit’ (the protein takes the shape of the ligand during the association process), while others do so exclusively through a mechanism known as ‘conformational selection’ (in the same way that each lock requires a key with specific characteristics, the bind between a protein and a ligand will depend if their shapes make such a fit possible).

However, in this research, Dr. Oscar Millet, from the Structural Biology Unit at CIC bioGUNE, and published in the November issue of the Journal of the American Chemical Society, refutes this paradigm and puts forward the idea that slight modifications using genetic engineering introduced into the hinge regions between two proteins are sufficient to alter the binding mechanism itself.

For the development of this research, two bacterial periplasmic binding proteins were taken as a model. These proteins bind through a spectacular conformational change (closing two domains round a hinge region) and which is similar to the process that carnivorous plants use to trap insects between their fleshy lobes.

“The main result of our work has shown that both mechanisms are intimately connected and that we can go from one to another just by introducing small modifications in the protein,” explained Óscar Millet.

“Not only have we understood this mechanism, but we have seen that the difference between this induced fit and the conformational selection is very subtle; they are actually not two independent processes – but everything is, in fact, connected. Nature is always subtle, and small variations to the chemical composition of the hinge lead us from one mechanism to the other,” added the CIC bioGUNE researcher.

“This mechanism is completely governed by the hinge region to the point that by exchanging the hinges using genetic engineering, the change of mechanism also occurs: the GGBP with the RBP hinge acts through the induced fit mechanism and vice versa, and the RBP with the GGBP hinge binds to the substratum through the lock-and-key mechanism,” Dr Millet explained.

“Understanding the mechanism by which periplasmic proteins trap glucose to insert it into the cells opens the possibility of using these molecules as biosensors”, explained Dr Millet. Thanks to these, glucose concentration could be measured in fluids other than blood, for example urine. This would make the process easier and would provide more reliable data than the traditional glucose concentration measurement methods in the blood of diabetes patients.

The techniques currently used can only give an approximate measurement of blood glucose concentration, as there are other substances that hide it. Any advance, therefore, in the search for new diagnosis methods will improve the control of the disease.


Further Information

Join For Free

Access to this exclusive content is for Technology Networks Premium members only.

Join Technology Networks Premium for free access to:

  • Exclusive articles
  • Presentations from international conferences
  • Over 3,300+ scientific posters on ePosters
  • More Than 4,900+ scientific videos on LabTube
  • 35 community eNewsletters


Sign In



Forgotten your details? Click Here
If you are not a member you can join here

*Please note: By logging into TechnologyNetworks.com you agree to accept the use of cookies. To find out more about the cookies we use and how to delete them, see our privacy policy.


Scientific News
Breakthrough Flu Vaccine Inhibited by Pre-existing Antibodies
Universal truths – how existing antibodies are sabotaging the most promising new human flu vaccines.
Gene Therapy for Metabolic Liver Diseases
Researchers have tested gene therapy in pigs from hereditary tyrosinemia type 1, with corrected liver cells being transplanted into the diseased liver.
Zika Vaccine Candidates Show Promise
Two experimental vaccines have shown promise against a major viral strain responsible for the Brazilian Zika outbreak.
New Medication Shows Promise Against Liver Fibrosis in Animal Studies
Liver fibrosis is a gradual scarring of the liver that puts people at risk for progressive liver disease and liver failure.
Raw Eggs Deemed Safe to Eat
A report published today by the Advisory Committee on the Microbiological Safety of Food (ACMSF) into egg safety has shown a major reduction in the risk from salmonella in UK eggs.
Monitoring TTX Toxin in Shellfish
In a number of small studies, mussels and oysters from the eastern and northern part of the Oosterschelde in Holland were found to contain tetrodotoxin (TTX).
Gene Terapy for Muscle Wasting Developed
New gene therapy could save millions of people suffering from muscle wasting disease.
NIH Begins Yellow Fever Vaccine Trial
NIH has initiated an early-stage clinical trial of a vaccine to protect against yellow fever.
Gene-Editing 'Toolbox' Targets Multiple Genes Simultaneously
Researchers have designed a system that modifies, or edits, multiple genes in a genome at once while minimising unintentional effects.
Detecting Alzheimer's with Smell Test
Odour identification test may offer low-cost alternative for predicting cognitive decline and detecting early-stage Alzheimer’s disease.
Scroll Up
Scroll Down
Skyscraper Banner

Skyscraper Banner
Go to LabTube
Go to eposters
 
Access to the latest scientific news
Exclusive articles
Upload and share your posters on ePosters
Latest presentations and webinars
View a library of 1,800+ scientific and medical posters
3,300+ scientific and medical posters
A library of 2,500+ scientific videos on LabTube
4,900+ scientific videos
Close
Premium CrownJOIN TECHNOLOGY NETWORKS PREMIUM FOR FREE!