Structural Biology/Biochemistry Seminar
Tuesday, March 18, 2014
Kasha Laboratory, Room 112
“Molecular insight into the structure and function of TRP channels”
Dr. Vera Moiseenkova-Bell
Mt. Sinai Scholar and Asst. Professor
Case Western Reserve University
School of Medicine, Dept. of Pharmacology
Host: Dr. Scott Stagg
Research: Molecular mechanisms and structural basis of pain sensation.
Pain, while serving beneficial functions in provoking our attention to dangerous situations, is an unpleasant sensory and emotional experience. Millions of people suffer from unrelenting sensations of pain that are no longer serving a beneficial purpose. TRP channels are integral membrane proteins that involved in the transduction of chemical, inflammatory and neuropathic pain signals. The key question in understanding ion channel function is how do the protein domains that respond to stimuli communicate with the pore gates to mediate channel opening. We use multiple approaches including biochemistry, electrophysiology, mass spectrometry, and single-particle cryo-electron microscopy (cryo-EM) to elucidate activation and gating mechanism of these channels. Obtained information could be used towards advancing our understanding of the molecular processes that underlie pain sensation and development of novel analgesic agents.