Z01: Support Project on Biopolymer Engineering and Bioanalytics

In this project, we will establish a service platform for the production and engineering of the biopolymers, especially intrinsically disordered proteins (IDPs) and nucleic acid molecules, that are the focus of the researchers within the proposed CRC. This will be complemented by a service for extensive biophysical characterization of the IDPs produced and all the natural and synthetic biopolymers under investigation (proteins, nucleic acids, polymers) in individual research projects. The platform will be located at IMB’s Protein Production Core Facility (PPCF) and the Polymer Analysis Group (PAG) at the MPI-P. Our facilities lend extensive knowledge and practical expertise in construct design and strategies for protein modification, expression and purification, as well as biophysical methodology for comprehensive characterization of biomolecules and polymers, such as analytical chromatography, hydrodynamic scattering methods, binding analysis and protein stability screening. Using our state-of-the-art equipment, we will establish novel, bespoke and streamlined protocols for producing challenging biopolymers, such as degradation-sensitive IDPs, and characterizing their polymer properties. In addition, we will establish new analytical methodology, especially with regard to chromatographic characterization of nucleic acids and proteins. Importantly, the PPCF and the PAG will accompany projects from their initial stages on expression construct generation, recombinant protein expression, protein modification, purification, and protein quality control through to bioanalytical and biophysical studies. Our aim is to provide support that combines “classical” molecular and biochemical engineering with analytical tools developed in the field of polymer research. As individual protocols will be established in a collaborative manner, we will also contribute to the training of PhD students and postdoctoral researchers within the CRC. We will also provide further connections to the relevant experts and core facility groups established on campus, so that all available resources can be harnessed by the CRC.

Biophysical analysis of proteins, nucleic acids and synthetic polymers: the information available from the methods offered by the PAG (MPI-P).
Martin Möckel

Institute of Molecular Biology

Svenja Morsbach

Max Planck Institute for Polymer Research

Department Physical Chemistry, JGU