UCLA Researchers produce clearest-ever image of telomerase

The enzyme telomerase has an important role in cancer, suggesting it may be an ideal target for anticancer drugs. But before that translational work can begin, a high-resolution image of telomerase is needed. Now a team of scientists and from UCLA and UC Berkeley have reported in the journal Science that they have produced just such an image.

"Many details [that] we could only guess at before we can now see unambiguously," said senior author Dr. Juli Feigon of UCLA. "If telomerase were a cat, before we could see its general outline and location of the limbs. But now we can see the eyes, the whiskers, the tails and the toes."  

A CTSI award of $10K for use of the Titan Krios electron microscope with Gatan K2 direct detector helped to push the research forward, Dr. Feigon said. Her team is now pursuing an even higher-resolution image of the enzyme's structure.

Further reading:
The Science paper
The UCLA news release

Image caption: Structure of Tetrahymena telomerase reveals previously unknown subunits, functions, and interactions.

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