By Adi Goldenzweig and Sarel J. Fleishman

Published in: Annual Review of Biochemistry

Published on: June 1, 2018

Abstract: Proteins are increasingly used in basic and applied biomedical research. Many proteins, however, are only marginally stable and can be expressed in limited amounts, thus hampering research and applications. Research has revealed the thermodynamic, cellular, and evolutionary principles and mechanisms that underlie marginal stability. With this growing understanding, computational stability design methods have advanced over the past two decades starting from methods that selectively addressed only some aspects of marginal stability. Current methods are more general and, by combining phylogenetic analysis with atomistic design, have shown drastic improvements in solubility, thermal stability, and aggregation resistance while maintaining the protein's primary molecular activity. Stability design is opening the way to rational engineering of improved enzymes, therapeutics, and vaccines and to the application of protein design methodology to large proteins and molecular activities that have proven challenging in the past.

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