L.N. JOHNSON, OXFORD MOLECULAR BIOPHYSICS LABORATORY / SCIENCE PHOTO LIBRARY L.N. JOHNSON, OXFORD MOLECULAR BIOPHYSICS LABORATORY / SCIENCE PHOTO LIBRARY
Glycogen phosphorylase (T-state). Computer graphic of one molecule of glycogen phosphorylase, an enzyme involved in breaking down glycogen. The action of glycogen phosphorylase provides fuel for muscle contraction; it also maintains the blood glucose balance. Here, the T- or "inactive" state of this enzyme is seen. It is a protein made of two polypeptide subunits (blue and purple). Thus this dimer molecule has a two fold axis. When inactive, N-terminal tails (thick white strands) are positioned as seen. When active, N-terminal tails twist, and red/yellow parts of the molecule alter. The active site is inside the blue subunit.
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