Item description for Engineering the Genetic Code: Expanding the Amino Acid Repertoire for the Design of Novel Proteins by Nediljko Budisa...
The ability to introduce non-canonical amino acids in vivo has greatly expanded the repertoire of accessible proteins for basic research and biotechnological application. Here, the different methods and strategies to incorporate new or modified amino acids are explained in detail, including a lot of practical advice for first-time users of this powerful technique. Novel applications in protein biochemistry, genomics, biotechnology and biomedicine made possible by the expansion of the genetic code are discussed and numerous examples are given. Essential reading for all molecular life scientists who want to stay ahead in their research.
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Est. Packaging Dimensions: Length: 9.53" Width: 7.01" Height: 0.79" Weight: 1.63 lbs.
Release Date Feb 6, 2006
ISBN 3527312439 ISBN13 9783527312436
Availability 0 units.
More About Nediljko Budisa
Nediljko Budisa is a group leader at the Max-Planck-Institute of Biochemistry in Martinsried near Munich (Germany). He studied Chemistry and Biology at the University of Zagreb (Croatia) before joining the group of Nobel Prize Winner Robert Huber at Martinsried to obtain his PhD degree. During postdoctoral work with R. Huber and L. Moroder he led an independent research team in protein engineering. In 2004, Dr. Budisa received the BioFuture Award of the German Federal Ministry for Research and Education.
Nediljko Budisa has an academic affiliation as follows - Max-Planck-Institute of Biochemistry, Martinsried, Germany.
Reviews - What do customers think about Engineering the Genetic Code: Expanding the Amino Acid Repertoire for the Design of Novel Proteins?
Getting the genetic code to work for us Jul 14, 2006
There was a time around thirty years ago when it all seemed quite straightforward: the genetic code had been fully determined, it was the same in all organisms, and that was that. Understanding initiation still presented some difficulties, but translation and termination apparently presented none. However, few things in biology turn out to be simple: the universal genetic code is now known not to be universal, and gene splicing and other complications have disposed of other aspects of the simple picture.
Realization that the code is not universal may have complicated the textbooks, but it has also provided an opportunity for the biotechnologist: if nature has been able to modify the code then perhaps we can do so as well, and use the built-in protein synthesizing machinery to make proteins with novel aminoacids to fulfil novel functions. To do this successfully, however, we first need to understand the mechanisms that allowed the code to change during evolution. That is what this book, written by one of the world's foremost experts in the field, is about. A large part is devoted to understanding nature, but always with the hope that understanding will bring a capacity to engineer new proteins. It is a mine of information for anyone seriously interested in the subject, and, although perhaps it is a little too detailed for the general reader, it can be read with profit by any biochemist.
In general the biochemical information in the book is sound, though it is a pity that aminoacids are drawn throughout with neutral structures, as one cannot understand their properties without understanding that they are zwitterions. Expert readers will, of course, have no difficulty in reading the structures correctly, but it is not so clear that students will also do so. On page 123 there is the surprising statement that the biosynthesis of histidine is very expensive at about 40 ATP equivalents. The number is correct, but the implication that other aminoacids are much cheaper is not: with the obvious exception of glycine, none of the others is very much cheaper, and nearly half are more expensive, tryptophan being much more expensive.
An unfortunate trend in modern publishing is to save production costs by dispensing with proofreading, or, often amounting to the same thing, putting the whole responsibility on the author. It is neither realistic nor reasonable to expect a Croatian author who has made his career in Germany to detect every error, but it is certainly reasonable to expect a publisher charging around 50 cents a page for the finished product to invest a little of the profits in paying a professional to do the job properly. This, however, seems not have been done, and although most of the errors are minor they appear in great profusion, and include misspellings of numerous names of chemical compounds when it is not always easy to guess what was intended. They have also saved money on the index, which was clearly compiled by someone who had no idea what the book was about, with consecutive entries (leading to the same page) for both "S-phenyl-cys" and "S-phenylcysteine".