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Postgraduate Admissions

Professor Sophie Jackson

Biological Self-Assembly

Self-assembly processes are extremely common in Nature. They include unimolecular reactions like the folding of a polypeptide chain into its native, functional structure and RNA into unique three-dimensional conformations. However, self-assembly processes also occur where multiple molecules of the same type form higher-order functional aggregates. In some cases, these are functional species which play an important role in Biology, such as the aggregation of carotenoid pigments such as lutein into aggregates into the macula and retina in eyes where it has a photoprotective effect. 

In other cases, self-assembly processes are deleterious and associated with a large number of disease states, e.g. Amyloid-beta (Ab) peptide in Alzheimers Disease. Some of the biological self-assembly systems our group will be described along with the experimental methods used to investigate them.

T  01223 336357