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THE STRUCTURE AND THE FUNCTION OF SecY TRANSLOCONABSTRACTSecY translocon is a channel in the endoplasmic reticulum that transports newly made proteins to their destinations. Programs called Rasmol and Chem3D Pro were used to study the SecY structure; the three subunits, the pore ring, and the plug were identified. The atomic bondings within SecY, intermolecular forces, and hydration were studied as well. SecY’s fascinating ability is that it has the ability to decide either to insert the proteins into the membrane or transfer the proteins outside of the membrane. How the SecY makes this decision is still unknown to man. In order to solve this, a software program called NAMD may be used in the future to possibly reveal the complex mechanism of SecY.

BACKGROUNDProteins play a crucial role in an organism as building blocks of its body, as biological catalysts, and as media for transporting other molecules. Thus, proteins that are newly synthesized by must be delivered into numerous parts of the body of a living thing. While the proteins are being sent to wherever they are needed, they eventually have to encounter a hydrophobic lipid membrane barrier. The proteins go through series of mechanisms, called the secretory pathway, that specify their destinations and convey them there1. This process involves a channel that could either help proteins pass through the membrane or assist in inserting them into the ER membrane1.The SecY translocon, which exists in cells of all kinds of organisms, is located in the membrane of the endoplasmic reticulum, which temporarily stores nascent proteins2. The SecY, which itself is made up of proteins, acts as that very channel aforementioned. It is actually classified as pr…

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…07 Jul 18.5. Tian, Pu and Ioan Andricioaei. 2006 April 15. Size, Motion, and Function of the SecY translocon Revealed by Molecular Dynamics Simulations with Virtual Probes. . Accessed in 2007 Jul 23.6. Allen, Toby. Personal interview. 2007 Jul 23.7. Zumdahl, Steven S. Chemistry. Lexington: D.C. Heath and Company, 1989.8. Bickerstaff, Gordon. Peptide Bonds and Peptides. Accessed in Jun 309. Wilbraham, Antony C. et al. Chemistry. Menlo Park: Prentice Hall, 2000. 5th ed.10. Curtis, Helena and N. Sue Barnes. Biology. New York: Worth Publishers, 1989. 5th ed.11.Theoretical and Computational Biophysics Group. 2007 Jun 5. Steered/ Interactive Molecular Dynamics. . Accessed in 2007 Jun 31.

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