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Sticky switches

William Wells

Genome Biology 2000, 1:spotlight-20000621-02  doi:10.1186/gb-spotlight-20000621-02

The electronic version of this article is the complete one and can be found online at:

Published:21 June 2000

© 2000 BioMed Central Ltd

Research news

The binding interface between human growth hormone (hGH) and the hGH receptor has a well-defined hydrophobic core. In the 16 June Science , Guo et al. replace two residues from this region (a threonine from hGH and a tryptophan from the hGH receptor) with glycines to create a cavity. They then screen a library of around 200 indole-based compounds and find one that can restore the binding of the two mutated proteins (Science 2000, 288:2042-2045). The 1000-fold increase in binding affinity in the presence of the chemical constitutes a switch that may ultimately find applications in vivo.


  1. A hot spot of binding energy in a hormone-receptor interface.

    PubMed Abstract OpenURL

  2. [] webcite

    Science magazine