Institut für Biochemie
Keywords: Protein biosynthesis, posttranslational modifications, protein-RNA interactions.
Corinna Lippmann, a postdoc of Prof. V. A. Erdmann's group, has focused her interest on posttranslational modifications in prokaryotes. She described for the first time phosphorylation of elongation factor Tu at a strictly conserved position, threonine 382 in E.coli. Several experimental results indicate that the modification is part of the elongation cycle in protein biosynthesis. Introduction of a phosphate group leads to the switch of a condensed (GTP-complexed) formation to the more open GDP form. The structure of EF-Tu is known at high resolution since Corinna Lippmann first succeeded in growing crystals from the intact protein suitable for X-ray analysis. Dr. Lippmann is also involved in a trilateral project between Israel, the Palestinian Authority and Germany, initiated and coordinated by Prof. V. A. Erdmann concerned with tumour diagnosis and therapy based on oncofetal RNAs. The working group consists of two Ph.D. and one master student. Postdocs from other European countries often join Dr. Lippmann's group. The studies on the EF-Tu project are supported by the DFG (Li 611 1/2) and the European Community.