AS field by FDPB 1982
Warwicker Group
eIF4E schematiceIF4E mRNA paths 2005

Manchester Institute of Biotechnology

School of Chemistry
Princess Street
Manchester  M1 7DN

+44 (0)161 3064490







Structural Bioinformatics

Poster summary of work in group, 2017

We study structure and function in proteins and other biological molecules.  We developed the Finite Difference Poisson-Boltzmann method for computing solvation effects, which has led on to algorithms for calculating and predicting charge-charge interactions and pH-dependent properties. These remain a focus of our research, and allow for specific hypothesis formation and testing with individual molecules.

By contrast, the post-genomic era, with vast databases of sequences and structures, gives an opportunity to look for partitioning of biophysical properties by sub-group.  For example, studying features that separate enzyme from non-enyme, that distinguish proteins from different sub-cellular organelles, or that determine the thermostability of macromolecules from thermophilic organisms.  In some of these cases, it is possible to turn the observation around, making predictive tools, or at least uncovering the molecular mechanisms that will lead to predictive tools.

Areas of current interest include: Developing models for prediction of redox potential; Enyme active site and Functional site rationalisation and prediction; Structural correlates of conductance in Ion channels; pH-dependence - models and functional significance; Properties that distinguish proteins from hyperthermophiles; Structured and non structured aspects of post-translational modification; Protein-Nucleic acid interactions; Improved algorithms for predicting protein solubility (and their application in a pharmaceutical context); Structure-function models for cell biology, in close collaboration with experimental groups.

thioredoxin family activity 2004
Redox Potentials
Protein environment couples evolution to function, via redox potential.  Can we predict this relationship?
Enzyme/non-Enzyme 2005
Function Prediction
Calculated physical and chemical properties can separate e.g. enz/non-enz. What about more informative distinctions?
K+ channel profiles 2007 Biophysics
Some mechanistic aspects are becoming more clear, but many details remain obscure. Sequence and structure hold the key.
pKs from FD/DH 2004
Continuum models for charge interactions lead to rationalisation and prediction of pKas and pH-dependence.
pH dep
Models for solubility and aggregation of proteins, based on 'omics data and biophysics..