The Bubonic Plague's Pla Protein

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The Bubonic Plague's Pla Protein. Ben Weber, Kaitlyn Rothamer, Hailey Nuthals, Alex Esselman (Dr. Colton and MSOE). SMART Team. S tudents M odeling A R esearch T opic. Purposes: To understand the molecular world through the application of science in analyzing facts
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The Bubonic Plague's Pla ProteinBen Weber, Kaitlyn Rothamer, Hailey Nuthals, Alex Esselman(Dr. Colton and MSOE)SMART TeamStudentsModelingAResearchTopicPurposes:
  • To understand the molecular world through the application of science in analyzing facts
  • Modeling proteins to understand the implications of their structural formulas
  • 2011-12 TopicThe Bubonic Plague's Pla proteinThe Bubonic Plague"The Black Death"First occurred in the Byzantine Empire (500 AD), where it killed about 25 million peopleNext hit Europe in the 1330's, killing nearly 1/3 of the population.Spread from flea bites that jumped rides on trade ships from China to Italian portsCaused by bacteria Yersinia PestisThe Spread of the Black DeathSymptomsCharacterized by swollen lymph nodes, fever, vomiting of blood, gangrene on fingersDeath within 2-7 days.In Today's TermsOnly 10-30 cases of the plague are reported each year in the U.S.Globally, about 1,000-3,000 cases each yearBubonic Plague in U.S.Biological WarfareEarliest use of biological warfare - Chinese warriors would launch dead bodies infected with plague using catapultsInfected and killed enemies rapidlyToday...Could be used as a terrorism weapon - quickly causes epidemicIf made to be drug resistant, could be even more horribleYersinia PestisGram Negative BacteriaY. Pestis is a gram negative bacteriaGram negative: bacteria that are not affected by crystal violet dye in Gram staining protocol.Used to classify bacteria based on their cell wallsGram negative bacteria are known to cause swellingAffects lipopolysaccharide layer (LPS)Where the Problem Starts: ClottingClotting is what the body uses to isolate bacteriaOnce clotted, white blood cells can take down bacteriaClots consist of fibrin
  • Pla prevents clotting (problem begins)
  • (Pla model pictures here)CleavingAntiplasminCleaver: electrically excited water moleculePla's cleaver cleaves active arm in antiplasmin & bond site in plasminogen Leads to more plasmin in blood.Antiplasmin attracts plasmin, pulls it out of shapeMaintains healthy levels of plasminWorks to keep fibrin intactIntact fibrin = regular clotting process.Keep in mind - since Y. pestis is transferred through flea bites, blood tries to clot to kill it...Example of cleavingAntiplasmin pulling apart plasminAntiplasminPutting it TogetherPla's cleaver increases plasminMore plasmin means less fibrinLess fibrin means less ability to clotIf there are no clots, Y. pestis is free to travel the human bodyHow it KillsY. pestis begins to attack the lymphatic system (bubonic plague)Can spread to respiratory system (called pneumonic plague)Can also affect blood system (called septicemic plague)Process of bubonic plagueSneaky BacteriaY. pestis creates F1 & V antigens which prevent its absorption into cellsHides in white blood cells and lymph nodes to avoid detection from neutrophilsNeutrophils trap and kill microbes existing outside of white blood cells< F1 antigenV antigen >ImmunizationsNo specific, tell-all immunization has been found... Possibilities:Vaccine made to target F1 and V antigensThis way the plague can't hideProblem: many newer strains of Y. pestis are drug resistant with altered antigensWhen All Goes WrongWithout immediate treatment, the plague can spread and kill quicklyPlague has possible mutations to resist antibioticsUnless we understand how this plague works, a second, more fatal form could spreadPractical UsesThough a problem in plagues, the cleaving reaction could be used for good instead of evil:Cleaning oil spillsBetter soaps Cancer treatment/other medicinesBibliography,1222961184,8/stock-photo-this-is-a-d-representation-of-the-yersinia-pestis-bacteria-better-known-as-the-bubonic-plague-18274534.jpg Data Bank(Tools ctd.)JmolJmolJava program used to view and enhance understanding of molecular modelsAble to shape and control model AcknowledgementsDr. Colton (MSOE SMART team program)MSOE Center for Biomolecular ModelingMr. Heeren (Local SMART team leader)
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