Max Planck Institute of Biochemistry

Martinsried, Germany

Max Planck Institute of Biochemistry

Martinsried, Germany

The Max Planck Institute of Biochemistry is a research institute of the Max Planck Society located in Martinsried, a suburb of Munich. The Institute was "founded in 1973 by the merger of three formerly independent institutes: the Max Planck Institute of Biochemistry, the Max Planck Institute of Protein and Leather Research , and the Max Planck Institute of Cell Chemistry ."Currently, the institute hosts seven departments: Cellular Biochemistry Molecular Biology Molecular Cell Biology Molecular Medicine Molecular Structural Biology Proteomics and Signal Transduction Structural Cell Biology ↑ Wikipedia.

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Hartl F.U.,Max Planck Institute of Biochemistry
Annual Review of Biochemistry | Year: 2017

The majority of protein molecules must fold into defined three-dimensional structures to acquire functional activity. However, protein chains can adopt a multitude of conformational states, and their biologically active conformation is often only marginally stable. Metastable proteins tend to populate misfolded species that are prone to forming toxic aggregates, including soluble oligomers and fibrillar amyloid deposits, which are linked with neurodegeneration in Alzheimer and Parkinson disease, and many other pathologies. To prevent or regulate protein aggregation, all cells contain an extensive protein homeostasis (or proteostasis) network comprising molecular chaperones and other factors. These defense systems tend to decline during aging, facilitating the manifestation of aggregate deposition diseases. This volume of the Annual Review of Biochemistry contains a set of three articles addressing our current understanding of the structures of pathological protein aggregates and their associated disease mechanisms. These articles also discuss recent insights into the strategies cells have evolved to neutralize toxic aggregates by sequestering them in specific cellular locations. © 2017 by Annual Reviews.

Schaab C.,Max Planck Institute of Biochemistry
Molecular & cellular proteomics : MCP | Year: 2012

MS-based proteomics generates rapidly increasing amounts of precise and quantitative information. Analysis of individual proteomic experiments has made great strides, but the crucial ability to compare and store information across different proteome measurements still presents many challenges. For example, it has been difficult to avoid contamination of databases with low quality peptide identifications, to control for the inflation in false positive identifications when combining data sets, and to integrate quantitative data. Although, for example, the contamination with low quality identifications has been addressed by joint analysis of deposited raw data in some public repositories, we reasoned that there should be a role for a database specifically designed for high resolution and quantitative data. Here we describe a novel database termed MaxQB that stores and displays collections of large proteomics projects and allows joint analysis and comparison. We demonstrate the analysis tools of MaxQB using proteome data of 11 different human cell lines and 28 mouse tissues. The database-wide false discovery rate is controlled by adjusting the project specific cutoff scores for the combined data sets. The 11 cell line proteomes together identify proteins expressed from more than half of all human genes. For each protein of interest, expression levels estimated by label-free quantification can be visualized across the cell lines. Similarly, the expression rank order and estimated amount of each protein within each proteome are plotted. We used MaxQB to calculate the signal reproducibility of the detected peptides for the same proteins across different proteomes. Spearman rank correlation between peptide intensity and detection probability of identified proteins was greater than 0.8 for 64% of the proteome, whereas a minority of proteins have negative correlation. This information can be used to pinpoint false protein identifications, independently of peptide database scores. The information contained in MaxQB, including high resolution fragment spectra, is accessible to the community via a user-friendly web interface at

Geiger T.,Max Planck Institute of Biochemistry
Molecular & cellular proteomics : MCP | Year: 2012

Deep proteomic analysis of mammalian cell lines would yield an inventory of the building blocks of the most commonly used systems in biological research. Mass spectrometry-based proteomics can identify and quantify proteins in a global and unbiased manner and can highlight the cellular processes that are altered between such systems. We analyzed 11 human cell lines using an LTQ-Orbitrap family mass spectrometer with a "high field" Orbitrap mass analyzer with improved resolution and sequencing speed. We identified a total of 11,731 proteins, and on average 10,361 ± 120 proteins in each cell line. This very high proteome coverage enabled analysis of a broad range of processes and functions. Despite the distinct origins of the cell lines, our quantitative results showed surprisingly high similarity in terms of expressed proteins. Nevertheless, this global similarity of the proteomes did not imply equal expression levels of individual proteins across the 11 cell lines, as we found significant differences in expression levels for an estimated two-third of them. The variability in cellular expression levels was similar for low and high abundance proteins, and even many of the most highly expressed proteins with household roles showed significant differences between cells. Metabolic pathways, which have high redundancy, exhibited variable expression, whereas basic cellular functions such as the basal transcription machinery varied much less. We harness knowledge of these cell line proteomes for the construction of a broad coverage "super-SILAC" quantification standard. Together with the accompanying paper (Schaab, C. MCP 2012, PMID: 22301388) (17) these data can be used to obtain reference expression profiles for proteins of interest both within and across cell line proteomes.

Vabulas R.M.,Max Planck Institute of Biochemistry
Cold Spring Harbor perspectives in biology | Year: 2010

Proteins generally must fold into precise three-dimensional conformations to fulfill their biological functions. In the cell, this fundamental process is aided by molecular chaperones, which act in preventing protein misfolding and aggregation. How this machinery assists newly synthesized polypeptide chains in navigating the complex folding energy landscape is now being understood in considerable detail. The mechanisms that ensure the maintenance of a functional proteome under normal and stress conditions are also of great medical relevance, as the aggregation of proteins that escape the cellular quality control underlies a range of debilitating diseases, including many age-of-onset neurodegenerative disorders.

Cox J.,Max Planck Institute of Biochemistry | Mann M.,Max Planck Institute of Biochemistry | Mann M.,Novo Nordisk AS
Annual Review of Biochemistry | Year: 2011

Systems biology requires comprehensive data at all molecular levels. Mass spectrometry (MS)-based proteomics has emerged as a powerful and universal method for the global measurement of proteins. In the most widespread format, it uses liquid chromatography (LC) coupled to high-resolution tandem mass spectrometry (MS/MS) to identify and quantify peptides at a large scale. This peptide intensity information is the basic quantitative proteomic data type. It is used to quantify proteins between different proteome states, including the temporal variation of the proteome, to determine the complete primary structure of proteins including posttranslational modifications, to localize proteins to organelles, and to determine protein interactions. Here, we describe the principles of analysis and the areas of biology where proteomics can make unique contributions. The large-scale nature of proteomics data and its high accuracy pose special opportunities as well as challenges in systems biology that have been largely untapped so far. © 2011 by Annual Reviews. All rights reserved.

Gruber S.,Max Planck Institute of Biochemistry
Current Opinion in Microbiology | Year: 2014

All living cells have to master the extraordinarily extended and tangly nature of genomic DNA molecules - in particular during cell division when sister chromosomes are resolved from one another and confined to opposite halves of a cell. Bacteria have evolved diverse sets of proteins, which collectively ensure the formation of compact and yet highly dynamic nucleoids. Some of these players act locally by changing the path of DNA through the bending of its double helical backbone. Other proteins have wider or even global impact on chromosome organization, for example by interconnecting two distant segments of chromosomal DNA or by actively relocating DNA within a cell. Here, I highlight different modes of chromosome organization in bacteria and on this basis consider models for the function of SMC protein complexes, whose mechanism of action is only poorly understood so far. © 2014 The Authors.

Thakur S.S.,Max Planck Institute of Biochemistry
Molecular & cellular proteomics : MCP | Year: 2011

In-depth MS-based proteomics has necessitated fractionation of either proteins or peptides or both, often requiring considerable analysis time. Here we employ long liquid chromatography runs with high resolution coupled to an instrument with fast sequencing speed to investigate how much of the proteome is directly accessible to liquid chromatography-tandem MS characterization without any prefractionation steps. Triplicate single-run analyses identified 2990 yeast proteins, 68% of the total measured in a comprehensive yeast proteome. Among them, we covered the enzymes of the glycolysis and gluconeogenesis pathway targeted in a recent multiple reaction monitoring study. In a mammalian cell line, we identified 5376 proteins in a triplicate run, including representatives of 173 out of 200 KEGG metabolic and signaling pathways. Remarkably, the majority of proteins could be detected in the samples at sub-femtomole amounts and many in the low attomole range, in agreement with absolute abundance estimation done in previous works (Picotti et al. Cell, 138, 795-806, 2009). Our results imply an unexpectedly large dynamic range of the MS signal and sensitivity for liquid chromatography-tandem MS alone. With further development, single-run analysis has the potential to radically simplify many proteomic studies while maintaining a systems-wide view of the proteome.

Karras G.I.,Max Planck Institute of Biochemistry | Jentsch S.,Max Planck Institute of Biochemistry
Cell | Year: 2010

Damaged DNA templates provide an obstacle to the replication fork and can cause genome instability. In eukaryotes, tolerance to damaged DNA is mediated largely by the RAD6 pathway involving ubiquitylation of the DNA polymerase processivity factor PCNA. Whereas monoubiquitylation of PCNA mediates error-prone translesion synthesis (TLS), polyubiquitylation triggers an error-free pathway. Both branches of this pathway are believed to occur in S phase in order to ensure replication completion. However, we found that limiting TLS or the error-free pathway to the G2/M phase of the cell-cycle efficiently promote lesion tolerance. Thus, our findings indicate that both branches of the DNA damage tolerance pathway operate effectively after chromosomal replication, outside S phase. We therefore propose that the RAD6 pathway acts on single-stranded gaps left behind newly restarted replication forks. © 2010 Elsevier Inc.

Psakhye I.,Max Planck Institute of Biochemistry | Jentsch S.,Max Planck Institute of Biochemistry
Cell | Year: 2012

Protein modification by SUMO affects a wide range of protein substrates. Surprisingly, although SUMO pathway mutants display strong phenotypes, the function of individual SUMO modifications is often enigmatic, and SUMOylation-defective mutants commonly lack notable phenotypes. Here, we use DNA double-strand break repair as an example and show that DNA damage triggers a SUMOylation wave, leading to simultaneous multisite modifications of several repair proteins of the same pathway. Catalyzed by a DNA-bound SUMO ligase and triggered by single-stranded DNA, SUMOylation stabilizes physical interactions between the proteins. Notably, only wholesale elimination of SUMOylation of several repair proteins significantly affects the homologous recombination pathway by considerably slowing down DNA repair. Thus, SUMO acts synergistically on several proteins, and individual modifications only add up to efficient repair. We propose that SUMOylation may thus often target a protein group rather than individual proteins, whereas localized modification enzymes and highly specific triggers ensure specificity. © 2012 Elsevier Inc.

Jentsch S.,Max Planck Institute of Biochemistry | Psakhye I.,Max Planck Institute of Biochemistry
Annual Review of Genetics | Year: 2013

Reversible modification of proteins by SUMO (small ubiquitin-like modifier) affects a large number of cellular processes. In striking contrast to the related ubiquitin pathway, only a few enzymes participate in the SUMO system, although this pathway has numerous substrates as well. Emerging evidence suggests that SUMOylation frequently targets entire groups of physically interacting proteins rather than individual proteins. Protein-group SUMOylation appears to be triggered by recruitment of SUMO ligases to preassembled protein complexes. Because SUMOylation typically affects groups of proteins that bear SUMO-interaction motifs (SIMs), protein-group SUMOylation may foster physical interactions between proteins through multiple SUMO-SIM interactions. Individual SUMO modifications may act redundantly or additively, yet they may mediate dedicated functions as well. In this review, we focus on the unorthodox principles of this pathway and give examples for SUMO-controlled nuclear activities. We propose that collective SUMOylation is typical for nuclear assemblies and argue that SUMO serves as a distinguishing mark for functionally engaged protein fractions. © 2013 by Annual Reviews. All rights reserved.

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