Researchers from the University of Queensland (UQ) have used the Australian Synchrotron and cryo-electron microscopy in China to determine the three-dimensional structure of a complex enzyme found in plants microbes that could be used to develop advanced herbicides and treatments for infection.
A large international team led by Prof Luke Guddat of UQ published the structure of the enzyme acetohydroxyacid synthase (AHAS) in the journal Nature and also explained the first step in how the enzyme regulates the biosynthesis of three essential amino acids, leucine, valine and isoleucine.
“The way that the complex regulates this pathway had been unknown until now. We were finally able to explain it by understanding how the entire structure was assembled,” said Prof Guddat, who has been researching this enzyme for twenty years.
Read more on the Australian Synchrotron website
Image: The 3D structure resembles a ‘Maltese Cross’.