Research Projects

Our main fields of interest are enzyme research, molecular modeling and pattern-based drug design. We focus on the following specific areas:

1. Mechanism of motor enzymes and force-related enzymatic processes: We have clarified the relationship between conformational changes of the lever arm, the nucleotide binding pocket and the actin binding cleft of myosin using site-specific fluorescent signals combined with transient kinetic methods. ii, We were one of the first groups to describe actin binding cleft movement in myosin induced by actin and nucleotides. iii, We solved the mechanism how different nucleotides determine the strength of actin binding by myosin, which is a key feature of the actomyosin working cycle.We also have elucidated the mechanism of coupling between the power stroke of myosin and product release steps. ii, We found that selective force perturbation predictably affects the recovery stroke of myosin.

2. Conformational transitions of enzymes: We investigate enzymatic mechanisms and related conformational transitions of several enzymes by applying different transient kinetic and fluorescence methods. We also investigate the relations of enzymatic properties and the rotational spectra of individual amino acids.

3. In silico characterisation of enzymatic processes and interactions: We established a bioinformatics group in collaboration with Print-Net Ltd. One of the main projects of this group is the development of the Drug Profile Matching (DPM) method capable to reveal the effect profiles of drugs in their entirety, and to predict uncovered effects in a systematic manner. We have also been conducting several projects in molecular dynamics of motor enzymes to simulate the effects of force perturbation.