3 years ago

There Is an Inclusion for That: Material Properties of Protein Granules Provide a Platform for Building Diverse Cellular Functions

Proteins perform a staggering variety of functions in the cell. Traditionally, protein function was thought to be hard-wired into the folded structure and conformational dynamics of each protein molecule. Recent work describes a new mode of protein functionality driven by the collective behavior of many different proteins; most of which lack a defined structure. These proteins form clusters or granules in which unstructured polypeptides interact transiently. Nonspecific multivalent interactions drive the formation of phase-separated structures resembling aggregates. This type of functional aggregate granule can be thought of as a single supermolecular functional entity that derives function from its unique material properties. In this review we examine the emerging idea of protein granules as a new functional and structural unit of cellular organization.

Publisher URL: www.sciencedirect.com/science

DOI: S0968000417301494

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