Provocative prions may protect yeast cells from stress

Prions have a notorious reputation. They cause neurodegenerative disease, namely mad cow/Creutzfeld-Jakob disease. And the way these protein particles propagate—getting other proteins to join the pile—can seem insidious.

Revising the meaning of 'prion'

A team of Whitehead Institute and Stanford University scientists are redefining what it means to be a prion—a type of protein that can pass heritable traits from cell to cell by its structure instead of by DNA.

Prions can pass on beneficial traits, study finds

Prion proteins, best known as the agents of deadly brain disorders like mad cow disease, can help yeast survive hard times and pass the advantageous traits down to their offspring, according to a new study by researchers ...

Prion-like proteins found in mustard plant

(Phys.org)—A team of researchers affiliated with the Whitehead Institute for Biomedical Research, MIT and the Howard Hughes Medical Institute, all in Massachusetts has found a prion-like protein in Arabidopsis thaliana, ...

From good to bad with a copper switch

At the molecular level, the difference between Doctor Jekyll and Mr Hyde lies in a metal, copper. In its physiological form, the prion protein (PrPC ) is 'good' and is involved in normal body processes. It can happen, however, ...

Study uncovers secrets of a clump-dissolving protein

Workhorse molecules called heat-shock proteins contribute to refolding proteins that were once misfolded and clumped, causing such disorders as Parkinson's disease, amyotrophic lateral sclerosis, and Alzheimer's disease. ...

Where does the pathological misfolding of the prion originate?

"When they are healthy, they look like tiny spheres; when they are malignant, they appear as cubes" stated Giuseppe Legname, principal investigator of the Prion Biology Laboratory at the Scuola Internazionale Superiore di ...

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