Jamie Cate Research Group


The Cate Lab is exploring the molecular basis for protein biosynthesis, a cellular process that is universally conserved.  The ribosome, an RNA and protein factory common to all organisms, is responsible for protein synthesis and plays a key role in the conversion of genotype to phenotype in all forms of life.  It translates the genetic code in messenger RNA into the corresponding protein chain.  Understanding how the ribosome carries out protein synthesis remains a major challenge in molecular biology.  The ribosome is also a major target of antibiotics, as well as, human pathogens that co-opt translation for their own ends.  In order to determine the mechanisms underlying protein synthesis and its regulation, the lab uses a combination of x-ray crystallography and biochemistry and biophysics.


     Another project in the group is focused on developing catalytic strategies to make cellulose a viable source of renewable energy, in the form of bio-fuels.  Cellulose is the major structural polysaccharide in plant cell walls and the most abundant biopolymer on Earth


Biochemical and biophysical research in protein synthesis, translational control and enzymatic hydrolysis of cellulose