angle-left Membrane transporters, the doors of cellular metabolism
Codice Progetto o altro Identificativo
Denominazione Progetto
Tipologia di finanziamento
Tipologia ambito della fonte di finanziamento
Call e/o Bando specifici
Referente Scientifico (nome e cognome)
Vincenzo Zara
Compagine Progettuale
Università della Calabria, Università degli Studi di Bari, Università del Salento, Università degli Studi della Basilicata, CNR Istituto di Biomembrane, Bioenergetica, e Biotecnologie Molecolari -
Data inizio
Data fine
Sito Web
molecular transport mechanisms, recombinant proteins, cell biology, general biochemistry and metabolism, molecular modelling, membrane transporters
Transporters are essential cell constituents with a key role in nutrient and metabolite traffic across cell membranes. They control compartmentalized biochemical pathways by allowing metabolite traffic in sub-cellular compartments. Despite a vital role, most transporters are poorly characterized. We address a specific issue of the transporter knowledge, related to the branched chain amino acids (BCAA) and glutamine (Gln) metabolisms. These are essential or conditionally essential nutrients, involved in energy metabolism, nucleotide and protein synthesis and signaling. BCAA and Gln, once transported inside cells, must enter mitochondria for their metabolic fates. Plasma membrane and mitochondrial transporters for BCAA, Gln and their metabolites are still unknown or partially known. The project aim consisting in a comprehensive study of transporters involved in BCAA and Gln metabolism, will be achieved by four targets ranging from the biochemical characterization of the transporters and dissection of their physiological role to the expression regulation and the structure/function relationships with important outcomes to human health. Research teams with long standing experience on different types of transporters have been assembled for guaranteeing the project success.