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Indiana University Bloomington

Department of Biology

Faculty & Research

Faculty Profile

Cheng Kao

Photo of Cheng Kao
Research Images
Research photo by Cheng Kao

A model of the innate immunity receptor, Toll-like Receptor 3 (TLR3). TLR3 is one of the early sentries for vertebrate cells to detect invasion by RNA viruses. The molecule binds to RNA as a dimer to send a signal through the alpha-helical transmembrane domain to activate kinases that will perpetuate and amplify the signal that leads to cytokine production.

Research photo by Cheng Kao

The structure of the SARS virus endoribonuclease. The structure was derived from X-ray crystallography and shows the unusual hexameric structure of the enzyme. The active sites of the subunits, where seen, are highlighted in yellow. In addition to serving as an RNA processing enzyme, this protein can perturb normal regulation of the cell cycle.

Research photo by Cheng Kao

Viral capsids can package novel and useful materials. The top two images show electron micrographs of native particles from Brome Mosaic Virus (BMV) at two magnifications. The bottom two images show reassembled BMV-like particles containing nanogold particles. Note that these particles are sufficiently homogeneous to form crystal lattices.

Adjunct: Professor of Biochemistry

IU Affiliations
Biochemistry

Contact Information
By telephone: 812-855-7583
SI 205A
Research Area
Virology
Research Description

Biochemistry of RNA virus infection and innate immunity.

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