Biotech Updates

Scientists Identify Unique Proteins in Photosynthetic Organisms

June 17, 2011

With the availability of genome sequences of organisms, scientists are now able to study the details of the sequence to advance developments in plants and other organisms. Thus, a team of scientists at the Carnegie Institution for Science led by Arthur Grossman identified the specific proteins in plants and algae that are absent in the genomes of non-photosynthetic organisms.

Using advance computational tools, the team was able to identify 597 proteins unique to photosynthetic organisms and they called them GreenCut. About half of these proteins have known functions, while the other half are not yet associated with any biological process.

Furthermore, Grossman and colleagues revealed that many of the GreenCut proteins are also present in ancient cyanobacteria, red algae, and diatoms. Further assessment of these proteins is expected to bring more discoveries about their functions in photosynthetic cells, and how the photosynthetic cells might be adapted to survive various environmental conditions.

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