Known structure, unknown function

As a result of the Protein Structure Initiative, there are hundreds of protein structures that lack functional characterization. We have studied many of these proteins over the years. Currently, we are exploring the active site of phosphoglucose isomerase.
— Nicole Swope and Katherine Lake

Many of these proteins have been functionally annotated using bioinformatics (structure and sequence similarity to other proteins); however, they lack experimental validation. In some cases, the annotation is not very specific, such as oxidoreductase, and does not provide great insight into the role of the protein within the cell. In collaboration with Professor Mura and Dr. Price, we have developed an undergraduate research program focused on experimentally determining the function of enzymes whose structures were determined by PSI centers. The program consists of (i) independent research projects and (ii) a year-long biochemistry laboratory course (CHEM4411/CHEM4421) for all chemistry majors with a biochemistry focus.