Aziz Tumeh

Aziz Tumeh

PGSB Fellow
Arab American University-Palestine & Heinrich Heine University Düsseldorf

Department: Biology and Biotechnology

Faculty: Science

Specialization: Biochemistry 

Accurate Specialization: Structural Biochemistry and Biophysics

Palestinian supervisor: Prof. Dr. Hilal Zaid

Palestinian Supervisor affiliation: Biology and Biotechnology department, Faculty of Science, Arab American University-Palestine.

Degree aims:  PhD

FZJ Supervisor: Prof. Dr.  Joreg Labahn.

Center in Juelich: Institute of Biological Information Processing (IBI), Department: Structural Biochemistry (IBI-7), outstation: center for structural systems biology (CSSB). CSSB-FZJ

Affiliated University in Germany: Heinrich Heine University Düsseldorf

Department: Physical Biology

Faculty: Faculty of Mathematics and Natural Sciences

The mission research period : 01.05.2020-30.04.2023

Title of  Research: Structural characterization of proapoptotic Par-4

Research Purpose: Par-4 is a 332 amino-acid proapoptotic protein with tumor suppressor activity. It is predominantly unstructured and contains two important domains. It is well known for its selective induction of apoptosis in cancer cells and is attributed to the N-terminal SAC domain. The structure of the C terminal coiled coil (CC) domain, which is mainly involved in many of its interactions, has been determined. Par-4 is a nucleo-cytoplasmic shuttling protein containing a nuclear localizing sequence (NLS) in the SAC domain and a nuclear export sequence (NES) in the CC domain. 

The current project is aimed at determining the structure of extended regions from CC-domain to include the SAC domain of Par-4 . This may require the expression of protein in insect cells for PTM, and include some of the interacting proteins like autophagy receptor p62/SQSTM1, nuclear export receptor CRM1, or GRP78 protein to induce structure and stability of Par-4 upon complex formation.

Main outputs/results: The project is divided into 4 stages which are Molecular biology, protein production, biophysical characterization, and structural studies. So far, I have done the first stage, which includes a design for the required DNA constructs for par-4, and these constructs were confirmed by DNA sequencing. Now, I am working on the second stage. The protein has been expressed and I am working on setting up an appropriate protocol for the purification.