Professional Education

  • Doctor of Philosophy, Duke University (2010)

Stanford Advisors


All Publications

  • Quantitation of protein-protein interactions by thermal stability shift analysis PROTEIN SCIENCE Layton, C. J., Hellinga, H. W. 2011; 20 (8): 1439-1450


    Thermal stability shift analysis is a powerful method for examining binding interactions in proteins. We demonstrate that under certain circumstances, protein-protein interactions can be quantitated by monitoring shifts in thermal stability using thermodynamic models and data analysis methods presented in this work. This method relies on the determination of protein stabilities from thermal unfolding experiments using fluorescent dyes such as SYPRO Orange that report on protein denaturation. Data collection is rapid and straightforward using readily available real-time polymerase chain reaction instrumentation. We present an approach for the analysis of the unfolding transitions corresponding to each partner to extract the affinity of the interaction between the proteins. This method does not require the construction of a titration series that brackets the dissociation constant. In thermal shift experiments, protein stability data are obtained at different temperatures according to the affinity- and concentration-dependent shifts in unfolding transition midpoints. Treatment of the temperature dependence of affinity is, therefore, intrinsic to this method and is developed in this study. We used the interaction between maltose-binding protein (MBP) and a thermostable synthetic ankyrin repeat protein (Off7) as an experimental test case because their unfolding transitions overlap minimally. We found that MBP is significantly stabilized by Off7. High experimental throughput is enabled by sample parallelization, and the ability to extract quantitative binding information at a single partner concentration. In a single experiment, we were able to quantify the affinities of a series of alanine mutants, covering a wide range of affinities (? 100 nM to ? 100 ?M).

    View details for DOI 10.1002/pro.674

    View details for Web of Science ID 000293137300012

    View details for PubMedID 21674662

  • Integration of cell-free protein coexpression with an enzyme-linked immunosorbent assay enables rapid analysis of protein-protein interactions directly from DNA PROTEIN SCIENCE Layton, C. J., Hellinga, H. W. 2011; 20 (8): 1432-1438


    Assays that integrate detection of binding with cell-free protein expression directly from DNA can dramatically increase the pace at which protein-protein interactions (PPIs) can be analyzed by mutagenesis. In this study, we present a method that combines in vitro protein production with an enzyme-linked immunosorbent assay (ELISA) to measure PPIs. This method uses readily available commodity instrumentation and generic antibody-affinity tag interactions. It is straightforward and rapid to execute, enabling many interactions to be assessed in parallel. In traditional ELISAs, reporter complexes are assembled stepwise with one layer at a time. In the method presented here, all the members of the reporter complex are present and assembled together. The signal strength is dependent on all the intercomponent interaction affinities and concentrations. Although this assay is straightforward to execute, establishing proper conditions and analysis of the results require a thorough understanding of the processes that determine the signal strength. The formation of the fully assembled reporter sandwich can be modeled as a competition between Langmuir adsorption isotherms for the immobilized components and binding equilibria of the solution components. We have shown that modeling this process provides semiquantitative understanding of the effects of affinity and concentration and can guide strategies for the development of experimental protocols. We tested the method experimentally using the interaction between a synthetic ankyrin repeat protein (Off7) and maltose-binding protein. Measurements obtained for a collection of alanine mutations in the interface between these two proteins demonstrate that a range of affinities can be analyzed.

    View details for DOI 10.1002/pro.675

    View details for Web of Science ID 000293137300011

    View details for PubMedID 21674663

  • Thermodynamic Analysis of Ligand-Induced Changes in Protein Thermal Unfolding Applied to High-Throughput Determination of Ligand Affinities with Extrinsic Fluorescent Dyes BIOCHEMISTRY Layton, C. J., Hellinga, H. W. 2010; 49 (51): 10831-10841


    The quantification of protein-ligand interactions is essential for systems biology, drug discovery, and bioengineering. Ligand-induced changes in protein thermal stability provide a general, quantifiable signature of binding and may be monitored with dyes such as Sypro Orange (SO), which increase their fluorescence emission intensities upon interaction with the unfolded protein. This method is an experimentally straightforward, economical, and high-throughput approach for observing thermal melts using commonly available real-time polymerase chain reaction instrumentation. However, quantitative analysis requires careful consideration of the dye-mediated reporting mechanism and the underlying thermodynamic model. We determine affinity constants by analysis of ligand-mediated shifts in melting-temperature midpoint values. Ligand affinity is determined in a ligand titration series from shifts in free energies of stability at a common reference temperature. Thermodynamic parameters are obtained by fitting the inverse first derivative of the experimental signal reporting on thermal denaturation with equations that incorporate linear or nonlinear baseline models. We apply these methods to fit protein melts monitored with SO that exhibit prominent nonlinear post-transition baselines. SO can perturb the equilibria on which it is reporting. We analyze cases in which the ligand binds to both the native and denatured state or to the native state only and cases in which protein:ligand stoichiometry needs to treated explicitly.

    View details for DOI 10.1021/bi101414z

    View details for Web of Science ID 000285429200010

    View details for PubMedID 21050007

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