Browsing by Subject "POLYMERASE COMPLEX"

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  • Huiskonen, Juha T. (2018)
    Cryogenic transmission electron microscopy (cryo-TEM) is a high-resolution biological imaging method, whereby biological samples, such as purified proteins, macromolecular complexes, viral particles, organelles and cells, are embedded in vitreous ice preserving their native structures. Due to sensitivity of biological materials to the electron beam of the microscope, only relatively low electron doses can be applied during imaging. As a result, the signal arising from the structure of interest is overpowered by noise in the images. To increase the signal-to-noise ratio, different image processing-based strategies that aim at coherent averaging of signal have been devised. In such strategies, images are generally assumed to arise from multiple identical copies of the structure. Prior to averaging, the images must be grouped according to the view of the structure they represent and images representing the same view must be simultaneously aligned relatively to each other. For computational reconstruction of the 3D structure, images must contain different views of the original structure. Structures with multiple symmetry-related substructures are advantageous in averaging approaches because each image provides multiple views of the substructures. However, the symmetry assumption may be valid for only parts of the structure, leading to incoherent averaging of the other parts. Several image processing approaches have been adapted to tackle symmetry-mismatched substructures with increasing success. Such structures are ubiquitous in nature and further computational method development is needed to understanding their biological functions.
  • Hanhijarvi, Kalle J.; Ziedaite, Gabija; Bamford, Dennis H.; Haeggstrom, Edward; Poranen, Minna M. (2017)
    Genome packaging of double-stranded RNA (dsRNA) phages has been widely studied using biochemical and molecular biology methods. We adapted the existing in vitro packaging system of one such phage for single-molecule experimentation. To our knowledge, this is the first attempt to study the details of viral RNA packaging using optical tweezers. Pseudomonas phage phi 6 is a dsRNA virus with a tripartite genome. Positive-sense (+) single-stranded RNA (ssRNA) genome precursors are packaged into a preformed procapsid (PC), where negative strands are synthesized. We present single-molecule measurements of the viral ssRNA packaging by the phi 6 PC. Our data show that packaging proceeds intermittently in slow and fast phases, which likely reflects differences in the unfolding of the RNA secondary structures of the ssRNA being packaged. Although the mean packaging velocity was relatively low (0.07-0.54 nm/sec), packaging could reach 4.62 nm/sec during the fast packaging phase.