About this Research Topic
Peptides and proteins are important biological molecules for all living systems. The human body uses different peptides as hormones for signal transduction, whereas proteins are indispensable for cellular structure and function. Indeed, peptides and proteins are closely associated with nearly all human diseases. Not surprisingly, many peptides and proteins have been utilized for disease prevention or treatment. However, a human cell can produce over 10,000 different proteins, many of which we have very limited understanding. Even for peptides and proteins that have been studied, developing them as research tools or clinical agents still face different obstacles.
The need to address the limitations in peptide and protein research has led to the development of chemical biology tools in several aspects. Fundamentally, the ability to site-specifically modify a peptide or a protein has opened opportunities of manufacturing novel conjugates, functional investigation of post-translational modification, as well as fine regulation of the molecule’s properties and functions. Interaction of peptides and proteins with other biomolecules are involved in cellular biological pathways, and elucidation of these interactions is thus important to not only fundamental research but also clinical applications. While peptides and proteins are mostly not cell-permeable, approaches for their intracellular delivery have been developed, enabling their use against intracellular targets.
In this Research Topic, we wish to highlight recent advances in chemical biology tools for peptide and protein research. Manuscripts reporting Original Research and Perspectives, as well as Reviews and Mini-Reviews, are welcome. Topics to be addressed include, but are not limited to:
• Chemical and enzymatic means for site-specific peptide or protein modifications
• Chemical biology techniques to decipher protein functions in live cells
• Systems of intracellular delivery of peptides or proteins
• Approaches to elucidate biomolecule interactions with peptides or proteins
• Tools for developing peptide- or protein-based therapeutics
• Chemical and enzymatic approaches for structural and functional studies of proteins and peptides using analytical techniques (e.g. MS, NMR, cryoEM, crystallography)
Submissions applying chemical biology tools to address biological questions of peptides and proteins are also strongly welcomed.
Keywords: ligation, bioorthogonal reaction, chemical genetics, drug delivery, biologics
Important Note: All contributions to this Research Topic must be within the scope of the section and journal to which they are submitted, as defined in their mission statements. Frontiers reserves the right to guide an out-of-scope manuscript to a more suitable section or journal at any stage of peer review.