Revealing the Regulatory Role of Mn2+ in diverse biological processes via development and implementation of a biochemical Mn2+ sensor
Objectives: Characterize the molecular mechanisms of Mn2+ homeostasis. Elucidate the Mn2+ metalloproteome. Create a microfluidic calorimetric Mn2+ sensor.
Team Coordinator: Steven Damo, PhD (Subproject PI)
Collaborators: Nelms (Fisk, biology); N. Arnett (Fisk, chemistry), R. Mu (Fisk, physics), L Qian (Fisk CS); Vanderbilt Collaborators: Walter Chazin (Structural Biology), Eric Skaar (Microbiology/Immunology), and DeYu Li (Biomedical Engineering)
Scientific Impact: This transformative approach leverages the basic biochemistry of the protein calprotectin at the center of an interdisciplinary effort bridging structural biology, microbiology, computer science, engineering, and materials science in order to create a sensitive and selective manganese sensor that will inform the basic biology of manganese homeostasis, define the manganese metalloproteome, and serve as a device to detect manganese levels in biofluids.
Innovation: This project integrates well established methods from a broad spectrum of disciplines in order to repurpose the high manganese binding affinity of the protein calprotectin into a chemical sensor.
Develop a protein–based Mn2+ specific chelator and determine the microbial response to limiting versus abundant Mn2+ availability
Identify proteins that require Mn2+ as a cofactor based on transcriptional profiling. Determine structures of novel Mn-binding proteins using
experimental approaches or comparative modeling.
Graduate Students: Sashari Pinnace, Joshua Haynes, Velia Garcia, Saffron Little
Undergraduate: Isis Christopher, Anastacia Smith, Rocky Giwa, Kofi Amoah, Emmanuel Jackson, Kinara Byrd, Marshae Lashley, Dana Franklin, Jasmin Jordan, DarleanMartin, RukiayahWarner, Joel Wallace
Nashville State Community College: Horacio Guendulain