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Current Biology 19, 17, December 1, 2009 2009 Elsevier Ltd All rights reserved DOI 10.1016/j.cub.2009.09.022 Convergent Evolution of Novel Protein
 

Summary: Current Biology 19, 17, December 1, 2009 2009 Elsevier Ltd All rights reserved DOI 10.1016/j.cub.2009.09.022
Report
Convergent Evolution of Novel Protein
Function in Shrew and Lizard Venom
Yael T. Aminetzach,1 John R. Srouji,2 Chung Yin Kong,3
and Hopi E. Hoekstra1,*
1Department of Organismic and Evolutionary Biology
and the Museum of Comparative Zoology
2Department of Molecular and Cellular Biology
Harvard University, Cambridge, MA 02138, USA
3Institute for Technology Assessment, Massachusetts
General Hospital, Boston, MA 02114, USA
Summary
How do proteins evolve novel functions? To address this
question, we are studying the evolution of a mammalian
toxin, the serine protease BLTX [1], from the salivary glands
of the North American shrew Blarina brevicauda. Here, we
examine the molecular changes responsible for promoting
BLTX toxicity. First, we show that regulatory loops sur-
rounding the BLTX active site have evolved adaptively via

  

Source: Alwes, Frederike - Department of Organismic and Evolutionary Biology, Harvard University

 

Collections: Biology and Medicine