Research Seminar: Molybdenum metabolism in plants, humans and fungi: From atomic structures to patient therapy.
4 October 2017
Prof. Dr. Ralf Mendel, Department of Plant Biology, Braunschweig University of Technology, Germany
Tuesday 10th October, 1.00 p.m., Stacey Lecture Theatre 1
The transition element molybdenum (Mo) is essential for (nearly) all organisms. We deciphered the principles of Mo-metabolism in humans, plants and fungi: There are more than a dozen proteins involved in Mo uptake, in the conversion into the essential prosthetic group named molybdenum cofactor (Moco), storage and allocation of the cofactor, and posttranslational activation of Mo-enzymes. Mo-metabolism is intimately linked to iron metabolism. A mutation in Moco formation is lethal to the organism. Human patients born with a genetic defect in Moco formation die in early childhood. Based on our molecular plant work, we developed a FDA-approved therapy for these patients.