ERIC Number: EJ1025597
Record Type: Journal
Publication Date: 2013
Abstractor: As Provided
Reference Count: N/A
Molecular Mechanics and Dynamics Characterization of an "in silico" Mutated Protein: A Stand-Alone Lab Module or Support Activity for "in vivo" and "in vitro" Analyses of Targeted Proteins
Chiang, Harry; Robinson, Lucy C.; Brame, Cynthia J.; Messina, Troy C.
Biochemistry and Molecular Biology Education, v41 n6 p402-408 Nov-Dec 2013
Over the past 20 years, the biological sciences have increasingly incorporated chemistry, physics, computer science, and mathematics to aid in the development and use of mathematical models. Such combined approaches have been used to address problems from protein structure-function relationships to the workings of complex biological systems. Computer simulations of molecular events can now be accomplished quickly and with standard computer technology. Also, simulation software is freely available for most computing platforms, and online support for the novice user is ample. We have therefore created a molecular dynamics laboratory module to enhance undergraduate student understanding of molecular events underlying organismal phenotype. This module builds on a previously described project in which students use site-directed mutagenesis to investigate functions of conserved sequence features in members of a eukaryotic protein kinase family. In this report, we detail the laboratory activities of a MD module that provide a complement to phenotypic outcomes by providing a hypothesis-driven and quantifiable measure of predicted structural changes caused by targeted mutations. We also present examples of analyses students may perform. These laboratory activities can be integrated with genetics or biochemistry experiments as described, but could also be used independently in any course that would benefit from a quantitative approach to protein structure-function relationships.
Descriptors: Molecular Biology, Computer Simulation, Science Laboratories, College Science, Science Instruction, Undergraduate Students, Units of Study, Science Activities, Computer Uses in Education, Molecular Structure, Biochemistry
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Publication Type: Journal Articles; Reports - Descriptive
Education Level: Higher Education; Postsecondary Education
Authoring Institution: N/A