Membrane proteins play an essential role in controlling the movement of material and information in and out of the cell, in determining the flow and use of energy, as well as in triggering the initiation of numerous signaling pathways. To fulfill these roles, conformational and interaction dynamics exert a dominant influence on their functional behavior, for it is the interplay between structure and dynamics what ultimately defines their function.

The Membrane Protein Structural Dynamics Consortium (MPSDC) has been designed as a highly interactive, tightly integrated and multidisciplinary effort focused on elucidating the relationship between structure, dynamics and function in a variety of membrane proteins. This website serves as a gateway both to the Consortium's activities and resources, and to the scientific field at large.

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Conformational transitions and alternating-access mechanism in the sarcoplasmic reticulum calcium pump

Ion pumps are integral membrane proteins responsible for transporting ions against concentration gradients across biological membranes. Computational methods can be used to help supplement missing information about these pumps by providing atomic models for the transient intermediates along the transport cycle. Our goal with the present effort was to elucidate the details of the alternating access mechanism in SERCA by simulating the large-scale conformational transitions between the experimentally resolved stable sates.  

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Recent Consortium advances in the study of neurotransmitter transporters point the way to future research initiatives

The conceptual design, scope and integration of the Transport Cycle in Neurotransmitter Uptake Project exemplifies the consortium approach to discovery of mechanistic principles of secondary active transport. Read more »
Klaus Schulten's keynote lecture movie made available with audio
Following our earlier interview with Frontiers in Membrane Protein Structural Dynamics 2014 keynote lecturer Klaus Schulten, we have made available the fascinating movie “Photosynthetic Membrane of Purple Bacteria – A Clockwork of Proteins and Processes” which was shown during the lecture, now with Schulten's narrative.

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