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Polymers 2017, 9(9), 454; https://doi.org/10.3390/polym9090454

To Tie or Not to Tie? That Is the Question

1
Centre of New Technologies, University of Warsaw, Warsaw 02-097, Poland
2
Faculty of Chemistry, University of Warsaw, Warsaw 02-093, Poland
*
Author to whom correspondence should be addressed.
Received: 26 August 2017 / Revised: 11 September 2017 / Accepted: 12 September 2017 / Published: 16 September 2017
(This article belongs to the Special Issue Knotted and Catenated Polymers)
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Abstract

In this review, we provide an overview of entangled proteins. Around 6% of protein structures deposited in the PBD are entangled, forming knots, slipknots, lassos and links. We present theoretical methods and tools that enabled discovering and classifying such structures. We discuss the advantages and disadvantages of the non-trivial topology in proteins, based on available data about folding, stability, biological properties and evolutionary conservation. We also formulate intriguing and challenging questions on the border of biophysics, bioinformatics, biology and mathematics, which arise from the discovery of an entanglement in proteins. Finally, we discuss possible applications of entangled proteins in medicine and nanotechnology, such as the chance to design super stable proteins, whose stability could be controlled by chemical potential. View Full-Text
Keywords: knots; link; lasso; topology; polymer; disulfide knots; link; lasso; topology; polymer; disulfide
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Dabrowski-Tumanski, P.; Sulkowska, J.I. To Tie or Not to Tie? That Is the Question. Polymers 2017, 9, 454.

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