2012 Student Research Conference:
25th Annual Student Research Conference

Studies of Peptide-RNA Recognition to Better Understand the RNA World Hypothesis
Jessica C. Olson* and Caleb J. Smith
Dr. Maria Nagan, Faculty Mentor

In the RNA world hypothesis, RNA was once the primary biomolecule that carried genetic information and catalyzed reactions. To comprehend the role how proteins containing an arginine-rich motif recognize RNA, computational studies that model the structures are undertaken. The bacteriophage lambda uses the arginine-rich N protein recognition of boxB RNA to continue transcription of viral RNA. This study considers the biochemical interactions of the complex through replica exchange molecular dynamics to refine the structure of the complex from 29 NMR structures. In another arginine-rich peptide-RNA complex, the Rex - Rex Response Element Apatamer (RxREA) complex, the role of water in peptide-RNA recognition is explored. From other computational studies, it is thought that water molecules mediate peptide-RNA recognition. Simulations of the RxREA alone are presented to better understand if the RNA binds these same water molecules before binding the peptide or if they are intrinsic to the peptide-RNA complex.

Keywords: RNA, Computational Studies, Rex-Rex Response Element Aptamer, peptide-RNA recognition, bacteriophage lambda

Topic(s):Astrobiology

Presentation Type: Oral Paper

Session: 206-4
Location: MG 2090
Time: 10:15

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