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

Researchers Pair Experiments with Computer Models to Peer into Cells

Published: Wednesday, March 20, 2013
Last Updated: Wednesday, March 20, 2013
Bookmark and Share
BBSRC-funded researchers have developed a new strategy that can give scientists a better insight into how complex molecular machineries function in living cells.

In research published in the journal Molecular Systems Biology, the team from the University of Warwick, Manchester Interdisciplinary Biocentre and Liverpool University showed how to extract in vivo information about how complex molecular systems in yeast cells are controlled.

By making small changes in a process called mRNA translation, a crucial step in the manufacture of proteins within a cell, the team was able to obtain important information without disrupting the system.

These data were used to set parameters for a detailed computational model of protein synthesis in cells, revealing a number of insights about the process which were previously unknown.

For example, the research showed how individual components in the mRNA translation process had co-evolved to share responsibility for controlling how fast proteins are made.

Professor John McCarthy, professor of molecular systems biology at Warwick University, said: "A major objective of systems biology is to move forward from analysis of individual cellular components to create accurate digital models that provide insight into how these components work together within living cells.

"Through this approach, we ultimately hope to understand the 'emergent properties' of molecular systems in cells that, for decades, have fascinated biologists but evaded proper explanation.

"Up to now, it has proved very difficult to obtain an accurate picture of how cells control the various processes that go on inside them, leaving us largely guessing how the properties of individual components relate to the behaviour of systems that are assembled from them within living cells.

"Using minimal perturbations of precisely targeted steps of specific cellular processes together with a large number of quantitative analytical measurements, we have now made a major first step towards obtaining detailed insight into how the living cell's protein synthesis machinery is managed at the system level."

The approach has potential as a platform for a wide range of future studies into the molecular systems biology of gene expression.

The researchers also believe the combined experimental and computational approach taken should be applicable to multiple processes in a range of organisms.

Further Information
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 2,700+ scientific posters on ePosters
  • More Than 3,800+ 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 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.

Related Content

Genome-Editing Position Statement
A group of leading UK research organisations has today issued an initial joint statement in support of the continued use of CRISPR-Cas9 and other genome-editing techniques in preclinical research.
Monday, September 07, 2015
Expanding the DNA Alphabet: 'Extra' DNA Base Found to be Stable in Mammals
A rare DNA base, previously thought to be a temporary modification, has been shown to be stable in mammalian DNA, suggesting that it plays a key role in cellular function.
Thursday, June 25, 2015
Global Food Security (GFS) Develops New Funding Programme
New programme of research to tackle resilience of the food system.
Tuesday, June 02, 2015
£4M to Fund Important Food Crops from BBSRC and NERC
Research projects designed with industry partners to maximize impact.
Tuesday, June 02, 2015
Controlling Leaf Blotch Disease In Wheat
Scientists have found a genetic mechanism that could stop the spread of a "devastating" disease threatening wheat crops.
Thursday, February 05, 2015
Rising Temperatures Predicted to Lower Wheat Yields
An international consortium of researchers has used big data sets to predict the effects climate change on global wheat yields.
Friday, December 26, 2014
New Test For Detecting Horse Meat
New test compares differences in chemical compositions of the fat found in meats.
Tuesday, December 02, 2014
UK And India Collaborate On Future-Proof Crops
Drought-tolerant tomatoes, improved wheat and grass pea could provide crops for the future.
Friday, November 28, 2014
Drugs Used to Treat Lung Disease Work With the Body Clock
Scientists from The University of Manchester have discovered why medication to treat asthma and pneumonia can become ineffective.
Thursday, August 14, 2014
Researchers Use ‘Big Data’ Approach to Map the Relationships Between Human and Animal Diseases
EID2 database used to prevent and tackle disease outbreaks around the globe.
Thursday, July 17, 2014
TGAC at the Forefront of Next Generation Sequencing Capability
The Genome Analysis Centre adds two Illumina HiSeq 2500 machines to its platform suite.
Thursday, June 26, 2014
UK Diet and Health Research Awarded £4M
Funding awarded to six projects investigating diet and health to enable the food and drink industry to meet the needs of UK consumers.
Wednesday, June 25, 2014
Better Understanding of Disease Resistance Genes in Crops
Effector-triggered defence concept describes how plants protect themselves against the apoplast.
Friday, June 06, 2014
Investment Provides Access to the World’s Most Advanced Crystallography Technology
The UK community will benefit thanks to a £5.64M investment from UK research funders.
Tuesday, June 03, 2014
Public-private Research Partnership to Support Sustainable Agricultural Systems
The partnership will support projects that will help provide solutions to key challenges affecting the sustainability of the UK crop and livestock sectors.
Friday, May 23, 2014
Scientific News
Education and Expense: The Barriers to Mass Spectrometry in Clinical Laboratories?
Here we examine the perceived barriers to mass spec in clinical laboratories and explore the possible drivers behind the recent shift in uptake of the technology in clinical settings.
Removing 62 Barriers to Pig–to–Human Organ Transplant in One Fell Swoop
The largest number of simultaneous gene edits ever accomplished in the genome could help bridge the gap between organ transplant scarcity and the countless patients who need them.
Biomarker Predicting Transplant Complications May be Key to Treating Them
A protein that can be used to predict if a stem cell transplant patient will suffer severe complications may also be the key to preventing those complications, an international research team based at the Indiana University School of Medicine reported Wednesday.
Potential New Diagnosis and Therapy for Breast Cancer
Scientists at the University of York, using clinical specimens from charity Breast Cancer Now’s Tissue Bank, have conducted new research into a specific sodium channel that indicates the presence of cancer cells and affects tumour growth rates.
First Results Describing Sick Sea Star Immune Response
Though millions of sea stars along the West Coast have perished in the past several years from an apparent wasting disease, scientists still don’t know why.
New Protein Cleanup Factors Found to Control Bacterial Growth
UMass Amherst researchers characterize previously mysterious proteolysis factors.
UC San Diego Team Up with Illumina to Speed-Read Your Microbiome
Data analysis app accelerates studies aimed at using microbes to predict, diagnose and treat human diseases.
Proteins with ALS, Cancer Role Do Not Assume a Regular Shape
Our cells contain proteins, essential to functions like protein creation and DNA repair but also involved in forms of ALS and cancer, that never take a characteristic shape, a new study shows.
Paving the Way for Diamonds to Trace Early Cancers
Researchers from the University of Sydney reveal how nanoscale 'diamonds' can light up early-stage cancers in MRI scans.
Researchers Develop Classification Model for Cancers Caused by KRAS
Most frequently mutated cancer gene help oncologists choose more effective cancer therapies.
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
2,700+ scientific and medical posters
A library of 2,500+ scientific videos on LabTube
3,800+ scientific videos