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Fundamental
Medicinal protein network & systems biology
Prof. Sung-Hoon Kim
Current Research Interests
Determination of protein function is the most important task in the post-genome era. Since most of proteins exert and control their activities via complex network consisting of multiple components, investigation of protein network should be the way to determine the function of component proteins and to understand the working principle of living organisms. In addition, more proteins are found to play multiple functions that increase the complexity of biological systems. Thus, it is important to find functional protein networks to understand the multiple functions of the proteins and the operational principle of living organisms.
In this research, we focus on a novel functional network mediated by all twenty different human aminoacyl-tRNA synthetases (ARSs) (We call it "ARS Network") and investigate its physiological significance in a systematic manner. Although ARSs have been classified as housekeeping enzymes playing an essential role in the flow of genetic information to protein, there are evidences suggesting that these enzymes should be multi-functional proteins involved in diverse biological processes. Thus, we believe that these enzymes should coordinate their catalytic activities in protein synthesis with other biological processes by making complex functional network with diverse cellular proteins or structures. Although we chose to study this "ARS network" as an experimental system, the working principle of protein network should be universal regardless of the system. Thus, the long-term goal of our research is to understand the operational principle of biological network and construct a general theory that can be applied to all complex systems including living organisms.
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