Dr. Oscar Alzate, Associate Professor of Biotechnology Publishes Article


Texas A&M University-Texarkana professor Dr. Oscar Alzate publishes an article on proteomic analysis of a common soil bacterium.


Quantitative proteomic analysis of the Bacillus thuringiensis BGSC-4AW1 strain (serovar andalousiensis) has been published by The Journal of Integrated Omics and was co-written by Dr. Oscar Alzate, Texas A&M-Texarkana Associate Professor of Biotechnology. Other collaborators were Mrs. Jessica LeFors, adjunct instructor of Biology at A&M-Texarkana and investigators from the University of North Carolina at Chapel Hill. Dr. Alzate was the principal investigator.


Dr. Alzate explains, “Proteomics is a recent tool of scientific investigation in which the thousands upon thousands of proteins in an organism are identified, characterized, and classified according to their structures and functions. Proteomics is a tremendous tool for the analysis of living organisms and for applications to medical research.”


He further explains, “Bacillus thuringiensis is a common soil bacterium, found in almost all climates. This bacterium has been used for more than 60 years as the best source for biotechnological applications including biopesticides, and environmental cleansing. Bacillus thuringiensis is widely used for insect control and bioremediation because during some developmental stages this organism makes crystals containing functional proteins.”


“In the present work, proteomics has been utilized to understand the protein contents of a specific strain of Bacillus thuringiensis. This strain was selected after careful review of old literature suggested that its proteome might contain important toxins with applications to insect control, biotechnology, and medicine.

In this collaboration, it was found that this Bacillus thuringiensis strain, known as BGSC-4AW1, contains several hundreds of functional proteins. Specifically, it was found that the crystals contain two very important proteins: one protein with insecticidal capacity, known as Cry8Ca, and another protein that has been demonstrated by Dr. Alzate’s group to destroy cancer cells in cultures.”


For more information, contact Dr. Oscar Alzate at oscar.alzate@tamut.edu or (903) 334-6703.


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