Mechanics of Single Protein Molecules
- Matthias Rief (TU München)
Proteins are amazing molecular machines that can fold into a complex three dimensional structure in a self-organization process called protein folding. Even though powerful structural methods have allowed us taking still-photographs of protein structures in atomic detail, the knowledge about the folding pathways and dynamics as well as material properties of those structures is rather limited. Over the past 15 years, our group has developed single mechanical methods to study the dynamics and mechanics of protein structures. In my talk I will discuss how these methods can be used to investigate and control the conformational mechanics of individual proteins. Examples include protein folding as well as protein-protein interactions and enzyme mechanics.