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You are here: Home Administration Chemistry & Biochemistry Department Events 2019 Fall Semester Biochemistry Seminar: Kumaran S. Ramamurthi, "Synthetic Bacteria Deliver the Goods"

Biochemistry Seminar: Kumaran S. Ramamurthi, "Synthetic Bacteria Deliver the Goods"

Kumaran S. Ramamurthi, Senior Investigator, Laboratory of Molecular Biology, NCI/CCR, National Institutes of Health, "Synthetic Bacteria Deliver the Goods"
When Sep 18, 2019
from 12:00 PM to 01:00 PM
Where CUNY ASRC Main Auditorium
Contact Name
Contact Phone 212-650-8803
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Bacterial spores are dormant cell types, highly resistant to environmental insults, that are produced by certain species of bacteria when living conditions become unfavorable. These cell types are therefore one of the hardiest life forms on earth. Spores of the bacterium Bacillus subtilis are encased in a thick proteinaceous shell called the “coat”. The basement layer of the coat contains a novel cytoskeletal protein that polymerizes irreversibly in an ATP hydrolysisdependent manner1,2. This protein is anchored to the surface of the developing spore by a small shapesensing protein that preferentially embeds in convex membranes3,4,5. By applying the lessons learned from our basic research in studying these proteins, we have recently reconstructed the basement layer of the spore coat in vitro around tiny silica beads encased in a membrane bilayer to create artificial bacterial sporelike particles6. By chemically modifying the surface of these particles with moieties that target them to specific tissues, and by loading these particles with cargo of interest, we are now investigating the utility of these artificial bacteria in displaying vaccines and in delivering drugs specifically to cancerous cells.

1Molecular Cell 2008; 31: 406414

2PNAS 2013; 110:E151160

3Science 2009; 323:13541357

4PNAS 2015; 112:E19081915

5Cell Systems 2017; 5:518526

6Nature Communications 2015; 6:6777

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