Ciclo de Palestra do Centro de Química

João Carlos Marcos

Departamento de Química, Universidade do Minho

25 de outubro 2018

Aqueous phase separation from in vitro into the cell

Despite its apparent oddness phase separation in aqueous solution is a phenomena known for more than a century. However it remains mostly unnoticed until the late 1950’s when it was rediscovered and applied for the purification of biomolecules and cells. Since then a multitude of applications has been referred in the biomedical and biotechnology fields. Nowadays the most exciting developments are occurring in its application to plasmids, nanotubes, virus and stem cells purification. Recently it was observed that phase separation takes place inside the cell with an important role on the organization of the cytoplasm and nucleus. In this talk the principles of phase separation in aqueous solution will be described together with its main applications. Phase separation inside the cell will also be described focusing on its role on the formation of membrane-less organelles. The importance of these organelles for compartmentalizing the several reactions that take part inside the cell, together with the regulation of their formation will be discussed. The mechanisms behind it and an alternative hypothesis for there formation will be proposed and discussed.