NWO grant for Sanne Abeln (Integrative Bioinformatics) for research on role of entropy in misfolding proteins

The proposal of Dr Sanne Abeln, assistant professor in Bioinformatics, is one of the five research projects in fundamental Physics awarded by the NWO domain 'Sciences'.

09/26/2017 | 3:11 PM

In total, 2 million Euro is reserved for the awarded projects.

De­lin­eat­ing en­tropic con­tri­bu­tions in beta-strand for­ma­tion
In a healthy cell, pro­teins fold into com­pact struc­tures with re­gions con­tain­ing reg­u­lar alpha-he­li­cal and beta-strand con­fig­u­ra­tions. In dis­eases such as Alzheimer’s, pro­teins mis­fold and bind to each other using this same beta-stranded struc­ture. The un­der­ly­ing physics, par­tic­u­larly the con­fig­u­ra­tional en­tropy that ex­plains how favourable this beta-strand state is, is not prop­erly un­der­stood.

In this pro­ject, Sanne Abeln will tackle this prob­lem by in­cor­po­rat­ing in­for­ma­tion ex­tracted from un­fold­ing ex­per­i­ments and from struc­tural big data in large-scale com­puter sim­u­la­tions.

About NWO Physics
The Physics "Pro­jec­tru­imte" is an NWO sub­sidy that fi­nances fun­da­men­tal re­search in physics.

Read the ar­ti­cle (in Dutch) on all pro­pos­als hon­ored on the NWO web­site.