Project B04 – Exploring topology and dynamics of molecular interactions at Y receptors in living cells via non-canonical amino acids


Ammar Al-kara (PhD Student)

Leipzig University, Faculty of Life Sciences
Institute of Biochemistry
Brüderstrasse 34, D-04103 Leipzig

Karolin Philipp (PhD Student)

Leipzig University, Faculty of Life Sciences
Institute of Biochemistry
Brüderstrasse 34, D-04103 Leipzig


We focus on mapping protein-protein interaction surfaces in the live cell by combining chemical tools and modern molecular biology techniques. In particular, we use the expanded genetic code technology to incorporate crosslinking amino acids into proteins at specific sites.


Aydin Y, Böttke T, Lam JH, Ernicke S, Fortmann A, Tretbar M, Zarzycka B, Gurevich VV, Katritch V*, Coin I*. Structural details of a Class B GPCR-arrestin complex revealed by genetically encoded crosslinkers in living cells. Nat Commun. 2023; 14:1151.

Aydin Y, Coin I. Genetically encoded crosslinkers to address protein-protein interactions. Protein Sci. 2023; 32:e4637.

Ledwitch KV, Künze G, McKinney JR, Okwei E, Larochelle K, Pankewitz L, Ganguly S, Darling HL, Coin I, Meiler J. Sparse pseudocontact shift NMR data obtained from a non-canonical amino acid-linked lanthanide tag improves integral membrane protein structure prediction. J Biomol NMR. 2023 Apr 4.

Rudolf S, Kaempf K, Vu O, Meiler J, Beck-Sickinger AG, Coin I. Binding of Natural Peptide Ligands to the Neuropeptide Y5 Receptor. Angew Chem Int Ed Engl. 2022 Jan 26;61(5):e202108738. doi: 10.1002/anie.202108738. PMID:34822209.

Aydin Y, Coin I*. Biochemical Insights into Structure and Function of Arrestins. FEBS J. 2021; 288: 2529-2549.

Böttke T, Ernicke S, Serfling R, Ihling C, Burda E, Gurevich VV, Sinz A, Coin I. Exploring GPCR-arrestin interfaces with genetically encoded crosslinkers. EMBO Rep. 2020 Nov 5;21(11):e50437. doi: 10.15252/embr.202050437. Epub 2020 Sep 14. PMID: 32929862; PMCID: PMC7645262.

Kaiser A, Coin I. Capturing Peptide-GPCR Interactions and Their Dynamics. Molecules. 2020 Oct 15;25(20):4724. doi: 10.3390/molecules25204724. PMID: 33076289; PMCID: PMC7587574.

Seidel L, Zarzycka B, Katritch V, Coin I. Exploring pairwise chemical crosslinking to study peptide-receptor interactions. ChemBioChem, 2019; 20:1-11.

Coin I. Application of non-canonical crosslinking amino acids to study protein-protein interactions in live cells. Curr Opin Chem biol. 2018; 46:156-63.

Serfling R, Lorenz C, Etzel M, Schicht G, Böttke T, Mörl M, Coin I. Designer tRNAs for efficient incorporation of non-canonical amino acids by the pyrrolysine system in mammalian cells. Selected as breakthrough paper, journal cover. Nucleic Acids Res. 2018; 46:1-10.

Serfling R, Seidel L, Böttke T, Coin I. Optimizing the genetic incorporation of chemical probes into GPCRs for photo-crosslinking mapping and bioorthogonal chemistry in live mammalian cells. J Vis 2018; 134.

Seidel L, Zarzycka B, Zaidi SA, Katritch V, Coin I. Structural insight into the activation of a class B G-protein-coupled receptor by peptide hormones in live human cells. 2017; 6:27711.

Coin I, Katritch V, Sun T, Xiang Z, Siu FY, Beyermann M, Stevens RC, Wang L. Genetically encoded chemical probes reveal the binding path of Urocortin-I to CRF class B GPCR. 2013; 155:1258-69.

Xiang Z, Ren H, Hu YS, Coin I, Wei J, Cang H, Wang L. Adding an unnatural covalent bond to proteins through proximity-enhanced bioreactivity. Nat Methods. 2013; 10:885-8.

Coin I, Perrin MH, Vale WW, Wang L. Photocrosslinkers incorporated into G-Protein-Coupled-Receptors in mammalian cells: a ligand comparison. Selected as Very-Important-Paper (VIP) by referees. Angew Chem Int Ed Engl. 2011; 50:8077-81.

Coin I, Beyermann M, Bienert M. Solid-phase peptide synthesis: from standard procedures to the synthesis of difficult sequences. Nat Protoc. 2007; 2:3247-56.