Keith Hautala

By

College: Pharmacy

Guo Lab Discovers New Class of Revolution Biomotor and Solves Mystery in Viral DNA Packaging

Published: Mar 20, 2013
LEXINGTON, Ky. (March 20, 2013) — Scientists at the University of Kentucky have cracked a 35-year-old mystery about the workings of natural "biomotors."  These molecular machines are serving as models for development of synthetic nanomotors that will someday pump therapeutic DNA, RNA or drugs into individual diseased cells.

 

The report, revealing the innermost mechanisms of these motors in a bacteria-killing virus and a "new way to move DNA through cells," is being published online today in the journal ACS Nano.

 

The article, "Mechanism of One-Way Traffic of Hexameric Phi29 DNA Packaging Motor with Four Electropositive Relaying Layers Facilitating Anti-Parallel Revolution," can be downloaded with free, open access from http://pubs.acs.org/doi/abs/10.1021/nn4002775.  

 

Peixuan Guo, director of the UK Nanobiotechnology Center, and his colleagues explain that two motors have been found in nature: A linear motor and a rotating motor. Now they report discovery of a third type, a revolving molecular motor.

 

Guo points out that nanomotors will open the door to practical machines and other nanotechnology devices so small that 100,000 would fit across the width of a human hair. One major natural prototype for those development efforts has been the motor that packages DNA into the shell of bacteriophage phi29, a virus that infects and kills bacteria.

 

Guo’s own research team wants to embed a synthetic version of that motor into nanomedical devices that are injected into the body, travel to diseased cells and pump in medication. A major barrier in doing so has been uncertainty and controversy about exactly how the phi29 motor moves. Scientists thought that it worked by rotating or spinning in the same motion as the Earth turning once every 24 hours upon its own axis.

 

In their ACS Nano paper, Guo — with his team, Zhengyi Zhao, Emil Khisamutdinov, and Chad Schwartz — challenge that idea. Indeed, they discovered that the phi29 motor moves DNA without any rotational motion. The motor moves DNA with a revolving in the same motion as the Earth revolving around the sun in one orbit ever 365 days. The "revolution without rotation" model could resolve a big conundrum troubling the past 35 years of painstaking investigation of the mechanism of these viral DNA packaging motors, the report states. 

 

Guo is professor in the UK College of Pharmacy's Department of Pharmaceutical Sciences and holds the William S. Farish Fund Endowed Chair in Nanobiotechnology for the Markey Cancer Center.  

 

The authors acknowledge funding from the National Institute of Biomedical Imaging and Bioengineering of the National Institutes of Health.

 

Illustrated videos of the mechanism can be found at http://nanobio.uky.edu/movie2013.html

 

MEDIA CONTACT:  Keith Hautala, (859) 323-2396; keith.hautala@uky.edu

guo_biomotor.jpg001_peixuan_guo_crop.jpg
August
 
1
UK Writing Center Open for Summer Session 2 (June 9-August 4)
Mon
2
UK Writing Center Open for Summer Session 2 (June 9-August 4)
Tue
3
UK Writing Center Open for Summer Session 2 (June 9-August 4)
Wed
4
UK Writing Center Open for Summer Session 2 (June 9-August 4)
End of the Summer II 2016 Eight-Week Session
Thu
5
 
Fri
6
 
Sat
7
 
Sun
8
 
Mon
9
 
Tue
10
 
Wed
11
 
Thu
12
 
Fri
13
Parent and Families Open House
Sat
14
 
Sun
15
 
Mon
16
UK Women's Forum Board Meeting
Tue
17
 
Wed
18
 
Thu
19
K Week Kick-off
Off-campus Freshmen Check-in
Parent and Families Reception
Fri
20
New Student Induction Ceremony
Big Blue U
Getting Around Campus and Beyond
Campus Ruckus
Sat
21
UK Lex-Mart
K Team Lunch
Late-night Target Run
Sun
22
TEAL Classrooms Open House
TEAL Classrooms Open House
TEAL Classrooms Open House
TEAL Classrooms Open House
Dinner with your K Team
Mon
23
We Are UK
TEAL Classrooms Open House
TEAL Classrooms Open House
TEAL Classrooms Open House
TEAL Classrooms Open House
Campus Tours for K Teams
Tue
24
First Day of School Photos
First day of classes of Fall 2016
Wed
25
Pedalpalooza
First Day of School Photos
Thu
26
OCSS Wildcat Block Watch
Fri
27
Louis Zoellar Bickett: Saving Myself
Red River Gorge Adventure Trip for Out-of-State Students
Music Workshop for Teachers and Students: Michael Chandler
Flight 5191 Tenth Anniversary Memorial Service
Sat
28
Louis Zoellar Bickett: Saving Myself
Sun
29
Louis Zoellar Bickett: Saving Myself
Mon
30
Louis Zoellar Bickett: Saving Myself
Last Day to Add a Class for Fall 2016
Last Day to Withdraw to Receive 80% Refund
Tue
31
Louis Zoellar Bickett: Saving Myself
Wed
 
 
 
Aug 26
OCSS Wildcat Block Watch 08/26/2016

Fri, 08/26/2016

Sat, 08/27/2016 - Sun, 11/27/2016

Reset Page