Mammals have evolved systems for regulating the amount of iron taken up by the body. If we have too much or too little iron in our bodies, we can become ill. For example, abnormal iron accumulation in the brain has been linked to chronic neurological diseases such as Parkinsons and Alzheimers. The group has a long-standing interest in mechanisms of iron homeostasis in mammals and is currently focussing on the mode of action of ferroxidases, primarily ceruloplasmin and hephaestin, and their interaction with other proteins.
Modelling the interaction between ceruloplasmin and lactoferrin. A 3D model of lactoferrin, in pale blue, bound to ceruloplasmin. The peptide backbone of Ceruloplasmin (Cp) is shown in dark blue, and two peptides of Cp, that have been shown to bind Lf from biochemical studies, are shown as space-filled structures. The peptide in red is in domain 5 of Cp and the peptide in green from domain 6. The N-domain of lactoferrin is in contact with ceruloplasmin
- Dr Ken White