Dr. Katie Wilson

Understanding Biomolecular Interactions in Membrane-Protein Systems

Dr. Katie Wilson - Dr. Wilson is a candidate for the Assistant Professor in Computational Protein Biochemistry position

Monday January 10, 2022

Time: 1-2 PM

Direct link Webex: https://mun.webex.com/mun/j.php?MTID=m40b4ebdaaf551b5cca63c4d868bcbba2

The integrity of cells, function of organelles and existence of life is depended on the presence of cell membranes. The essential core of these membranes is the lipid bilayer, which contains incredible diversity in the chemical structures of the individual lipid species and the ratios in which these lipids are combined. Beyond the lipid bilayer, cell membranes contain a large variety of embedded proteins. These proteins underpin the pathways involved in the regulation of metabolites, signalling molecules, hormones, nutrients and trace elements. Recent work has highlighted that the lipid bilayer can affect the structure and function of proteins that are embedded in the membrane. Nevertheless, our current understanding of how each of these components affects the properties of the cell membrane and the functioning of membrane protein remains elusive; in part due to the difficulties in studying the dynamics of membranes at high spatiotemporal resolution. As membrane proteins account for ~70% of all drug targets gaining a wholistic understanding of membrane proteins is critical for future drug development. Through using multiscale molecular dynamics simulations unprecedented insights into the behaviour of membranes and membrane proteins can be obtained. This talk will highlight recent research that focuses on understanding the biophysical properties of cells membranes. Additionally, the complex interplay between the lipid environment of the structure and function of membrane proteins, and the role of the membrane lipids in the design of novel drugs for the treatment of chronic pain will be discussed.