With this investigation Ovaa and Vertegaal hope to get more insight in to the fundamentals of diseases coming forth from the disturbed degradation of proteins.
Ubiquitin and SUMO
Proteins are essential building blocks of cells of which our bodys are constructed. The functioning of proteins are regulated by small chemical groups and small proteins such as signalling proteins Ubiquitin and SUMO, which are coupled to other proteins. Ubiquitin is of importance ot regulate the lifespan of a given portein. The coupling of Ubiquitin to this protein is a signal for the protein to be degrated and recycled.
We know that a perturbed degradation of proteins can lead to neurodegenerative diseases and cancer. We also know that SUMO and Ubiquitin both influence the process of protein degradation. Until recent little is known however on the collaboration between ubiquitin and SUMO in this process. Ovaa and Vertegaal will investigate this collaboration in detail.