SCRIPPS RESEARCH SCIENTISTS SOLVE STRUCTURE OF PROTEIN
Scientists at The Scripps Research Institute have solved the structure of a crucial human immune system molecule called TLR3, an acronym for Toll-like receptor three.
In an upcoming issue of the journal Science, the protein is described as a large horseshoe-shaped coil composed of 23 leucine-rich repeats.
The structure reveals details of TLR3 that have never been seen before, an essential step toward fully understanding the critical role this protein-and other TLRs-play in the human innate immune system to rapidly detect invading pathogens.
In addition to helping scientists better understand how TLRs work, the structure may also help scientists take steps toward improving human health, since TLRs are implicated in a number of diseases and, hence, constitute potential therapeutic targets.