Dr Simon Webb and Professor Jonathan Clayden: A synthetic purinergic receptor

Article “End-to-end conformational communication through a synthetic purinergic receptor by ligand-induced helicity switching” accepted by Nature Chemistry.

Dr Simon Webb and Professor Jonathan Clayden, working with PhD student Rob Brown and PDRA Vincent Diemer, have recently had their article “End-to-end conformational communication through a synthetic purinergic receptor by ligand-induced helicity switching” accepted by Nature Chemistry. This publication is part of an ongoing project seeking to understand how information generated by ligand-induced conformational change is communicated through biological receptors. The article describes a synthetic receptor witha boron-containing binding site that selectively and reversibly complexes diol ligands. Recognition of a ligand induces a conformational change, which is relayed through the receptor to a spectroscopic reporter group >2 nm away.The exquisite sensitivity of the receptor even led to different signals from purine and pyrimidine nucleoside ligands. They hope that translating this dynamic conformational switching into a membrane environment may provide functional mimics of G-protein coupled receptors.                                                                           

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