A01 – Harald Schwalbe

Conformational dynamics of RNA regulation elements studied by NMR spectroscopy

It is the long-term goal of our research to investigate the molecular basis of RNA-based regulation processes by NMR spectroscopy. In the first funding period, we determined the molecular mechanism of purine-binding transcriptional and translational full-length riboswitches. We will characterize the translational adenine-sensing riboswitch by single-molecule fluorescence spectroscopy and investigate riboswitch function by in-cell and in-extract NMR spectroscopy. We will continue our biophysical studies to new classes of transcriptional riboswitches, the deoxyguanosine-sensing riboswitch as well as the SAM-sensing riboswitches as examples for riboswitches that we classify as either coupled and decoupled, depending on the sequence relation between aptamer domain and expression platform. Since these RNA regulation elements are very large for NMR, we will further develop methods to extend the size and complexity of RNA systems amenable to NMR studies.

Team

Harald Schwalbe (Principal Investigator and CRC speaker)
Boris Fürtig
Nusrat Qureshi
Oliver Binas
Tom Landgraf
Albrecht Völklein
Diana Müller
Anna Wacker