Tag Archives: insulin

The contribution of Nobel prize laureates to research of the protein structure: J. Sumner, J. Northrop, W. Stanley, L. Pauling, F. Sanger, M. Perutz, J. Kendrew

V. M. Danilova, R. P. Vynogradova, S. V. Komisarenko

Palladin Institute of Biochemistry, National Academy of Sciences of Ukraine, Kyiv;
e-mail: valdan@biochem.kiev.ua

Received: 11 Match 2020; Accepted: 15 May 2020

The second half of the 20th century was marked by remarkable discoveries in the chemistry and biochemistry of proteins, in particular, in establishing the protein structure. James Sumner, John Northrop, and Wendell Stanley, the Nobel Laureates in chemistry in 1946, were the first to isolate individual enzymes and viruses in a pure crystalline form and prove their protein nature, thereby making an invaluable scientific contribution to the development of important biological disciplines such as biochemistry, enzymology, virology, and molecular biology. A significant contribution to understanding chemical bonding in the formation of the different levels of a protein structure was made by Linus Pauling – a prominent American scientist of the 20th century. He was awarded the Nobel Prize in Chemistry in 1954 “for his research into the nature of the chemical bond and its application to the elucidation of the structure of complex substances”. Biochemists know him well as the author of the secondary structure of proteins – the α-helix and the β-sheet. Frederick Sanger, a two-time Nobel Prize winner (1958 and 1980), was the first among researchers who determined the primary amino acid sequence of a protein, for example, of two insulin polypeptide chains A and B. F. Sanger proved that the sequence nature of proteins’ structures is analogous to that of gene sequences in the DNA, and thus, the same principles may be applied. The difficult question of how a protein molecule is arranged in space was answered by the English biochemists Max F. Perutz and John C. Kendrew. They determined the three-dimensional structure of hemoglobin and myoglobin proteins by X-ray diffraction and were awarded the Nobel Prize in Chemistry in 1962 “for their studies of the structures of globular proteins”.

Development on knowledge of hormone biochemistry in the works of the Nobel prize laureates of the first half of the 20th century: F. G. Banting, John J. R. Macleod, H. O. Wieland, A. O. Windaus, A. F. Butenandt, L. Ružička, E.Kendall, P. Hench, T. Reichstein

R. P. Vynogradova, V. M. Danilova, S. V. Komisarenko

Palladin Institute of Biochemistry, National Academy of Sciences of Ukraine, Kyiv;
e-mail: valdan@biochem.kiev.ua

Received: 18 February 2019; Accepted: 14 March 2019

The first half of the 20th century was marked by significant scientific advances in the study of hormones and vitamins. Among the first resear­chers working with hormones were F. Banting and J. Macleod, who discovered and characterized the pancreatic hormone insulin. This discovery catalyzed advances in the understanding of the mechanisms regulating biochemical processes – a new topic in the field of biological chemistry. The next important stage in the development of knowledge on biologically active substances was the works of organic chemists G. Wieland, A. Windaus, A. Butenandt and L. Ružička. They almost simultaneously identified and characterized the chemical structures of bile acids, vitamin D as well as female and male sex hormones. They found that all of these compounds are of a steroid nature and identified cholesterol as the starting material for their synthesis in the body. The studies of highly-active substances of steroid nature were continued by E. Kendall, F. Hench and T. Reichstein. They synthesized and investigated the structure and biological effects of corticosteroids, the hormones produced in the adrenal cortex. They were first to develop a method for the commercial manufacturing of cortisone, a hormone which is widely used to treat inflammatory processes. Thus, in the first half of the 20th century, organic chemists gave biochemists knowledge on the structure of essential for the human body substances – steroid compounds.

Association of allele variants of receptor gene of androgens (by the number of CAG-repeats) with androgen dependent hormonal metabolic indices of the organism

V. V. Korpachev, S. V. Melnychenko, R. G. Lukashova

State Institution V. Р. Komisarenko Institute of Endocrinology and Metabolism,
National Academy of Medical Sciences of Ukraine, Kyiv;
e-mail: vitascovna@gmail.com

This review discusses up-to-date conceptions concerning an association of androgen receptor gene (AR) allele (by the number of CAG-repeats) variations with the change of the receptor activity in humans. Different contradictory experiment results concerning the AR function dependence on the number of CAG-repeats have been analyzed. The authors discuss this problem paying mostly their attention to the interrelation between the number of CAG-repeats  and indicators of glucose and lipid metabolism in males and females.