External Partner in SFB1027: Project on Membrane Fusion
November 2016. SNARE peptides act cooperatively during synaptic vesicle fusion. It has previously been suggested that oligomerization of SNARE complexes, which is required for cooperative action in fusion is mediated by interactions between their transmembrane domains (TMDs) and further tuned by interactions with the lipid environment. In this newly funded project on the Cooperative Action of SNARE Peptides in Fusion, the oligomerization of SNARE TMD peptides, their interaction with the lipid surrounding, and the peptide-induced membrane curvature and its influence on membrane fusion will be studied using molecular dynamics simulations. In a collaborative effort together with scientists from the experimental physics and physiology in Saarbrücken and Homburg, unprecedented insight into the molecular mechanisms governing membrane fusion is expected. The project is embedded within the Collaborative Research Center 1027 at Saarland University, Physical modeling of non-equilibrium processes in biological systems, that was extended now for another 4-year period by the DFG.