Masaki Tsujimura (M2), Department of Applied Chemistry, received Student presentation award at the 59th annual meeting of the biophysical society of Japan.
＜Name of award and short explanation about the award＞
Student presentation award at the 59th annual meeting of the biophysical society of Japan.
This award is conferred to excellent presentations delivered by students.
＜About awarded research＞
Anion channelrhodopsin (ACR) is a membrane protein that functions as a light-gated anion channel. ACR is widely used as a silencing tool of the neural activity in optogenetics. ACR has an aspartate residue which is a prerequisite for anion conduction. The protonation state of the aspartate residue is a matter of debate. We analyzed the absorption wavelengths of mutant ACR1s by conducting molecular dynamics simulations and using a quantum mechanical/molecular mechanical approach. The absorption wavelengths of mutant ACR1s were also measured in HEK293 cells. We revealed that the key aspartate is deprotonated in the ground state and involved in the proton transfer during the photocycle.
＜Your impression & future plan＞
I am very honored to receive the award. I appreciate the members of Ishikita laboratory and Sudo laboratory at Okayama University for many discussions. I will work harder to contribute to the development of improved optogenetics tools.