Public Release: 

Cornell Chemists Determine The Structure Of A New, Key Protein

Cornell University

ITHACA, N.Y. -- Scientists led by a Cornell University chemist have determined the structure of a key protein that binds to a powerful immunosuppressive agent, opening the door to improved cancer treatments and human gene therapy. The protein, called FRAP, binds to one side of rapamycin, a small, naturally occurring molecule that is known to shut down the immune system. The other side of rapamycin binds to another protein called FKBP12. When all three are bound together, the cell cycle is shut down.
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