Special Issue "Expanding and Reprogramming the Genetic Code"
Deadline for manuscript submissions: closed (31 March 2019)
The genetic code defines the fundamental rule of translating genetic information into proteins, and is presumably unchanged since its establishment billions of years ago. The 64 base triplets (codons) specify 22 amino acids and translation stops. The additional encoding of new amino acids requires the acquisition of specific molecular machinery and the adjustment of the codon usage in the organism to avoid lethal effects. Due to advanced knowledge and biotechnology, these hurdles have partly been overcome, making substantial progress toward the extensive reprogramming of the genetic code in living cells. The genetic code has successfully been modified, even in animals. Engineered codes could produce proteins, molecular systems/pathways, and organisms never realized in the history of life, through either artificial design or the autonomous evolution of host cells. The currently-available amino acids are almost exclusively confined to tyrosine and pyrrolysine derivatives, and further expansion of the amino-acid repertoire relies on the engineering of new tRNA–aminoacyl-tRNA synthetase pairs. The developed pairs can be used for redefining the meaning of multiple codons simultaneously, after a genome-wide rearrangement in codon usage makes this change viable. Only a few codons are currently useful. On the other hand, expanded codes have found various applications in basic science and industry, and enabled the exploration of biosystems supported by non-natural proteins. This Special Issue will cover original reports and review articles on method developments, applications, and future perspectives of genetic code expansion, as well as natural variations in translational molecules and machinery, which can inspire new directions of engineering.
Dr. Kensaku Sakamoto
Manuscript Submission Information
Manuscripts should be submitted online at www.mdpi.com by registering and logging in to this website. Once you are registered, click here to go to the submission form. Manuscripts can be submitted until the deadline. All papers will be peer-reviewed. Accepted papers will be published continuously in the journal (as soon as accepted) and will be listed together on the special issue website. Research articles, review articles as well as short communications are invited. For planned papers, a title and short abstract (about 100 words) can be sent to the Editorial Office for announcement on this website.
Submitted manuscripts should not have been published previously, nor be under consideration for publication elsewhere (except conference proceedings papers). All manuscripts are thoroughly refereed through a single-blind peer-review process. A guide for authors and other relevant information for submission of manuscripts is available on the Instructions for Authors page. International Journal of Molecular Sciences is an international peer-reviewed open access semimonthly journal published by MDPI.
Please visit the Instructions for Authors page before submitting a manuscript. The Article Processing Charge (APC) for publication in this open access journal is 1800 CHF (Swiss Francs). Submitted papers should be well formatted and use good English. Authors may use MDPI's English editing service prior to publication or during author revisions.
- unnatural amino acids
- aminoacyl-tRNA synthetase
- quadruplet codons
- orthogonal ribosome
- codon reassignment
- codon usage
- bacterial fitness
- cell-free translation
- chemical conjugate
- protein engineering