Biotechnological and protein-engineering implications of ancestral protein resurrection

Valeria A. Risso, Jose M. Sanchez-Ruiz, Sefika Ozkan

Research output: Contribution to journalReview article

8 Scopus citations


Approximations to the sequences of ancestral proteins can be derived from the sequences of their modern descendants. Proteins encoded by such reconstructed sequences can be prepared in the laboratory and subjected to experimental scrutiny. These ‘resurrected’ ancestral proteins often display remarkable properties, reflecting ancestral adaptations to intra-cellular and extra-cellular environments that differed from the environments hosting modern/extant proteins. Recent experimental and computational work has specifically discussed high stability, substrate and catalytic promiscuity, conformational flexibility/diversity and altered patterns of interaction with other sub-cellular components. In this review, we discuss these remarkable properties as well as recent attempts to explore their biotechnological and protein-engineering potential.

Original languageEnglish (US)
Pages (from-to)106-115
Number of pages10
JournalCurrent Opinion in Structural Biology
StatePublished - Aug 1 2018


ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • Structural Biology
  • Molecular Biology

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