“Understanding the speed limitations of ribosomes translating RNA in proteins”

News - 27 March 2017

PhD candidate Alexey Gritsenko obtained his doctorate on March 22th with his thesis “Data-driven modelling of protein synthesis. A sequence perspective”. He did his research within the Multimedia Computing Group and was supervised by Dick de Ridder. 

Alexey: “Imagine a lane with cars where different speed limitations apply. This results in cars moving at different speeds. Within biology, the same happens with ribosomes that translate strings of RNA into proteins. The ribosomes translate the RNA at a different speed. Within my PhD I have focused on understanding what determines the speed limitations of translation. This research was part of a bigger project, namely the Platform Green Synthetic Biology. Within this project compounds, responsible for among others the taste of a plant, are produced by placing pieces of DNA in yeast. Growing yeast is easier, faster and cheaper than growing a plant. However, the translation process in a plant is not the same as in yeast. Understanding the speed limitations of translation, allows for optimisation of the process.”