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Educación química

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BRAVO-GOMEZ, María Elena; ESPINOZA-GUILLEN, Adrián; CASTILLO BLUM, Silvia  and  BARBA BEHRENS, Norah. Metallochaperones: Personal escorts on intracellular trafficking of metal ions. Educ. quím [online]. 2015, vol.26, n.1, pp.26-37. ISSN 0187-893X.

Metallochaperones are proteins that specifically bind metal ions with high affinity and selectivity to deliver them to target proteins, acting in the intracellular trafficking of metal ions to guide and protect them toward their final destination, and consequently, protecting cell against free metal toxicity. Knowledge in this area is limited, nevertheless, some metallochaperones have been properly identified and are well characterized for their structure, their roles and the mechanisms involved in the molecular recognition and metal ion transfer between the metallochaperone and the target protein, therefore allowing a proper understanding of the way these macromolecules function. Metallochaperones of copper are the most studied metallochaperones and more information about them is found in the literature. However, information about those employed for other metals is also found, particularly those employed for delivering iron, followed by those employed for nickel, only scarce information is found on those related with zinc and even less for other metals. In this manuscript, a general view of information found in literature about the functions of metallochaperones involved in the trafficking of metal ion or assembly of metal centers and their mechanisms is given, with the aim of provide current educational material for bioinorganic undergraduate teachers and students about an emerging subject hard to find in bioinorganic textbooks.

Keywords : metallochaperones; trafficking of metal ions; copper trafficking; iron trafficking; nickel trafficking.

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