Recently in research:
- Vasquez et al. added synthetic pauses in translation to improve protein solubility. They made use of the known fact that in nature, ribosomes exhibit strategic pauses in translation to allow protein domains to fold efficiently before continuing translation. They edited the sequence of linkers between protein domains for varying ribosome affinity, to induce ribosome stalling. Their work demonstrates a 7-fold difference in expression level of soluble protein by changing only the linkers and not the protein’s primary sequence. Their work can be found here.
- Zhang et al. showed that, at the single cell level in culture, gene expression plateaus at two distinct levels: a dynamically active steady state, and a dynamically inactive but higher second plateau. Previous measurements of “steady state” gene expression have assayed expression at the second plateau, but Zhang et al. demonstrate that measurements at the first, dynamically active plateau are more predictive of a promoter’s behavior when assembled into a circuit. Their work is found here.