Crossreading the newest issue of C&EN, the following topic caught my attention:
Understanding the processes involved in malfunctional signaling is very important for researchers, as these malfunctions are often related to diseases. Malcuntional dopamine signaling is causing shizophrenia for example. To study such processes researchers try to use the proteins in a diffrent way by offering them artificial ligiand with higher affinities than their natural analogues. Such proteins are called RASSLs (receptor activated solely by synthetic ligands) and are somewhat the analogues of genetic knockouts. While for many many receptors RASSLs are well accessible, the opposite was true for dopamine receptors. It took a long time, but recently Peter Gmeiner et al. from the Erlangen-Nürnberg University found the first RASSL for a dopamine receptor. Gmeiner’s work will be published in ACS Chemical Neurosciences, a journal to be started 2010.
So first, if you’re interested in this topic you really should think about joining 3rd EuCheMS Chemistry Congress next year, as Peter Gmeiner is part of the local organizing committee and surely will be on-site! And secondly, this again demonstrates the high level, that this congress will have. Don’t miss it!