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Abstract Detail


Pierpont, Christopher Logan [1].

Functional Characterization of an Essential Chloroplast Protein.

Maturases are a group of enzymes which catalyze the removal of introns from pre-mRNA transcripts during post-transcriptional processing. They are arguably involved in one of the most important processes of the cell, as the splicing of introns is crucial for proper protein synthesis. In prokaryotes, maturases are home-target specific in that the enzyme is normally encoded within the intron which it splices. Maturase K, or MatK, is proposed to be the only plastid-encoded maturase of land plants. An RNA-level assay has shown that MatK associates with several introns within the plastid, similar to the splicing machinery of the nucleus. Because of this, MatK could potentially be part of a “proto-spliceosome.” However, though it has been shown that MatK is an essential protein for plastid function, and that it does indeed associate with introns, maturase activity has not been clearly demonstrated. A direct, in vitro, protein-level assay would not only allow for the simple demonstration of maturase activity, but would also provide a certain level of manipulation for analytical testing. An assay such as this would help characterize MatK function at the molecular level, as well as aid in determining associated factors required for splicing activity in the chloroplast. The aim of this project is to successfully design such an assay, and demonstrate maturase activity of MatK over the introns it associates with. Thus far, four of the seven intron substrates that MatK associates with have been successfully cloned into a bacterial system, and MatK expressed. Progress of activity tests will be discussed.

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1 - Coastal Carolina University, Biology, 11 East Chanticleer Drive, Conway, SC, 29526, USA


Presentation Type: Poster
Session: P, Genetics Posters
Location: Exhibit Hall/Savannah International Trade and Convention Center
Date: Monday, August 1st, 2016
Time: 5:30 PM This poster will be presented at 5:30 pm. The Poster Session runs from 5:30 pm to 7:00 pm. Posters with odd poster numbers are presented at 5:30 pm, and posters with even poster numbers are presented at 6:15 pm.
Number: PGN001
Abstract ID:346
Candidate for Awards:None

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