Ideas in Chemistry and Molecular Sciences gives an account of the most recent results of research in life sciences in Europe based on a selection of leading young scientists participating in the 2008 European Young Chemists Award competition. In addition to this, the authors provide the state of the art of their field of research and the perspective or preview of future directions.
Bruno Pignataro, born in Bologna in 1972, is Professor of Physical Chemistry at the University of Palermo. He received his degree in chemistry in 1995 from the University of Catania and his PhD in materials science five years later. He has helped establish a wide network of international collaborations and organized more than 10 meetings at national and international level, including coordinating the Young Chemists Group of the Italian Chemical Society and chairing the first editions of the European Young Chemist Award. He is a referee for several leading chemistry and materials journals, has more than 70 scientific publications and some 90 conference communications to his name, along with several invited lectures. Professor Pignataro's research interests focus on the related fields of the physical chemistry of molecular surfaces and soft nanotechnologies.
Preface PART I: Biochemical Studies THE ROLE OF COPPER ION AND THE UBIQUITIN SYSTEM IN NEURODEGENERATIVE DISORDERS Introduction Metal Ions in the Brain Brain Copper Homeostasis Brain Copper and Neurodegenerative Disorders The Role ob Ubiquitin in Protein Degradation Failure of the Ubiquitin System in Neurodegenerative Disorders Interaction of Ubiquitin with Metal Ions Biological Implications Conclusions and Perspectives THE BIOINORGANIC AND ORGANOMETALLIC CHEMISTRY OF COPPER(III) Introduction Bioinorganic Implications of Copper(III) Organometallic CuIII Species in Organic Transformations Miscellany: Cuprate Superconducting Materials Overview and Future Targets CHEMICAL PROTEIN MODIFICATION Introducing Diversity by Posttranslational Modification Chemistry: A Route to Modified Proteins Challenges in Chemical Protein Modification Traditional Methods for Protein Modification Recent Innovations in Site-Selective Protein Modification Conclusion and Outlook PART II: Drug Delivery VITAMIN B12: A POTENTIAL TARGETING MOLECULE FOR THERAPEUTIC DRUG DELIVERY Introduction Transport Mechanism Metabolism of B12 Vitamin B12 Derivatives Outlook STRATEGIES FOR MICROSPHERE-MEDIATED CELLULAR DELIVERY Introduction Microspheres Future Perspectives PART III: Research in Therapeutics FUNDAMENTAL PROCESSES IN RADIATION DAMAGE TO DNA: HOW LOW-ENERGY ELECTRONS DAMAGE BIOMOLECULES Radiation Damage and the Role of Low-Energy Electrons DEA Studies on Model Compounds for the DNA Backbone Outlook and Future Prospects STRUCTURE-BASED DESIGN ON THE WAY TO NEW ANTI-INFECTIVES Introduction Isoprenoids and the Nonmevalonate Pathway Targeting the CDP-Binding Pocket of IspE X-Ray Cocrystal Structure Analysis Conclusions and Outlook DRUG-MEMBRANE INTERACTIONS: MOLECULAR MECHANISMS UNDERLYING THERAPEUTIC AND TOXIC EFFECTS OF DRUGS Biological Membranes Drug-Membrane Interactions Analysis and Quantification of Drug-Membrane Interactions Drug-Membrane Interactions Applied to the Study of Nonsteroidal Anti-Inflammatory Drugs (NSAIDs) Conclusions and Future Research Directions TARGETING DISEASE WITH SMALL MOLECULE INHIBITORS OF PROTEIN-PROTEIN INTERACTIONS Introduction High-Throughput Screening of Chemical Libraries High-Throughput Screening of Biosynthesized Libraries Future Direction CRACKING THE GLYCOCODE: RECENT DEVELOPMENTS IN GLYCOMICS State of the Art Some New Insights in Glycomics Future Perspectives PART IV: Enzyme Chemistry O2 REACTIVITY AT MODEL COPPER SYSTEMS: MIMICKING TYROSINASE ACTIVITY General Introduction: O2 Activation and Model Systems Copper Proteins Involved in O2 Activation O2 Binding and Activation at Biomimetic Cu Complexes Concluding Remarks PART V: Structure-Property Relationship and Biosensing CHIRALITY IN BIOCHEMISTRY: A COMPUTATIONAL APPROACH FOR INVESTIGATING BIOMOLECULE CONFORMATIONS Introduction Computational Techniques for Studying Protein Dynamics Employing Chirality to Analyze Protein Motions Perspectives COLLISIONAL MECHANISM-BASED E-DNA SENSORS: A GENERAL PLATFORM FOR LABEL-FREE ELECTROCHEMICAL DETECTION OF HYBRIDIZATION AND DNA BINDING PROTEINS Introduction E-DNA Signaling Mechanism E-DNA Sensor for DNA Binding Proteins Detection Conclusions and Future Perspectives