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  • From Peptides to Polymers

    Molecular Probes for Biological Investigation

    From Peptides to Polymers

    Molecular Probes for Biological Investigation

    Keynote Speaker: Michael Famulok (Universität Bonn)Presented by the Chemical Biology Discussion Group
    Reported by Megan Stephan | Posted August 18, 2008

    Overview

    Chemical biologists seek to design new chemical tools for use in research and medicine. Their search is predicated on the incredible diversity of chemical structures, both natural and otherwise. This diversity was well represented at the Chemical Biology Discussion Group's Special Year-End Meeting, held June 2, 2008.

    Molecules represented ranged from nucleic acids to peptides to small drug-like compounds. Keynote speaker Michael Famulok of the Universität Bonn described his work using aptamers, small, highly structured nucleic acids, to screen small molecule libraries for potential drug compounds. Famulok has used aptamers to identify new inhibitors of human immunodeficiency virus (HIV) replication, as well as inhibitors of a class of proteins involved in cytoskeletal remodeling known as cytohesins. His work on cytohesins has identified interesting new roles for these proteins in insulin receptor signaling and metabolic regulation. Famulok was followed by six graduate students who presented their work on a wide range of topics.

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