Corporate entry Structural Biology Division (2002 - )
The Walter and Eliza Hall Institute of Medical Research
- Medical Research
The Structural Biology Division is the Institute's newest Division, being founded in 2002. The Division's goal is to contribute to the discovery of new medicines through studies of the three-dimensional structures of biological macromolecules likely to be targets for drugs. It provides analysis by X-ray crystallography and Nuclear Magnetic Resonance spectroscopy (NMR) and deals with molecular design and synthetic chemistry. The core staff of this Division came from the Biomedical Research Institute - a joint initiative of CSIRO and Victoria's Strategic Industry Research Foundation.
The Division's goal is to contribute to the discovery of new medicines through studies of the three-dimensional structures of biological macromolecules that are either targets for drugs or potential therapeutics in their own right. To this end, the Division undertakes research in structure analysis (by X-ray crystallography and Nuclear Magnetic Resonance spectroscopy), molecular design, medicinal chemistry and high throughput chemical screening. Research highlights over the past year include determining the structures of the C-terminal domain of insulin-like growth factor binding protein-6, DLC2, which is able to bind another protein, Bmf, and prevent it from exerting its death-inducing activity; and the haemagglutinin-neuraminidase (HN) of parainfluenza virus type 3. Just how these results shed light on the function of these molecules is described in the following reports.
In February 2003, the medicinal chemistry group moved into new laboratories at the Bundoora campus, and with support from Bio21, new robotic equipment was purchased and installed for high throughput chemical screening. Both labs are now fully operational and in November 2003 the WEHI Biotechnology Centre was officially opened by The Honourable John Brumby, the Victorian Minister for Industry, Innovation and Regional Development. The technologies and expertise based at the Bundoora Biotechnology Centre provide a direct mechanism for translation and commercialisation of the Institute's basic research activities. Results have begun to flow from the high-throughput chemical screening work and an increasing amount of medicinal chemistry effort has gone into following-up the most promising molecules from several different screens. The first three WEHI medicinal chemistry PhD students have commenced their research projects at the Bundoora campus. Taken from the Division's homepage September 2005
Emily Geraghty & Annette Alafaci
Created: 17 November 2004, Last modified: 22 March 2006