The Protein Translation Research Network (PTRN) is a multi-institutional & investigator network funded by the National Institutes of Health (NIH) to bring together unique biochemical expertise to address fundamental questions on the nature of in vivo protein folding. Proteins must fold into their correct shape, location, and time in order to execute the chemical reactions required for life. Many factors govern this process, but it has been appreciated since the 1960’s that the primary determinant for folding lays within the protein itself. Misfolded proteins are implicated in numerous diseases and protein synthesis itself is the target of numerous antibiotics. There is a gap in understanding how a partially synthesized protein interacts with the as yet untranslated protein mRNA. Understanding this process of synthesis is a necessary step towards addressing defects in this process in disease and how emergent proteins evolve.
This research network is specifically designed to address fundamental questions around factors that affect the rate and nature of protein synthesis in a manner which is difficult to achieve without a collection of specialized experts.
A fundamental characteristic of the PTRN is the commitment to multidisciplinary training of post-doctoral research fellows who will work with multiple investigators in shared research environments. The individuals have established a record of success in their own research programs and we will leverage the existing investments to achieve our broader aims.