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Opportunity at U.S. Army Medical Research & Materiel Command (AMRMC)

Mechanism of Toxin Action

Location

U.S. Army Medical Research Institute of Infectious Diseases, US Army Medical Research Insti Infec Diseases

RO# Location
97.20.00.B4627 Fort Detrick, MD 217025011

Advisers

Name E-mail Phone
Ahmed, Syed Ashraf Syed.A.Ahmed.civ@mail.mil 301.619.6299

Description

Basic and applied research opportunities exist in the development of intervention of protein toxins. Our research focuses on the mechanism of action and structure-function relationships of protein toxins. These studies center on developing inhibitors as therapeutic agents and protective vaccines. Current research involves botulinum neurotoxins, which exert a triphasic action for toxicity: cell surface binding, internalization, and enzymatic catalysis. Mechanism of toxin internalization including potential post-translocational modification and subsequent catalysis are of special interest. We use a combination of techniques in protein chemistry (e.g., expression, purification, chemical modification, electrophoresis, chromatography, and amino acid sequencing), enzymology, spectroscopy (absorbance, fluorescence, and CD), cell biology, immunology, and recombinant DNA, and corroborate the results by three-dimensional structures. Other approaches include crystallization/co-crystallization of toxins and toxin fragments with inhibitors or substrate analogues for structure determination by x-ray crystallography. Additional toxins of interest include those from anthrax, ricin, and viruses causing hemorrhagic fever.

 

Keywords:
Structure; Ultraviolet-visible; Toxin(s); Protein; Mechanism; Chemistry; Translocation; Toxin inhibitors; Spectroscopy; Fluorescence; Chromatograph; Electrophores;

Eligibility

Citizenship:  Open to U.S. citizens, permanent residents and non-U.S. citizens
Level:  Open to Postdoctoral and Senior applicants
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