Crystal structure of a human endogenous reverse transcriptase revealed

The crystal structure of a human endogenous reverse transcriptase has similarities to HIV reverse transcriptase, a well-known tractable drug target, which will help design drugs to treat cancer and other diseases, according to a study co-authored by a Rutgers researcher.

The study, published in The Proceedings of the National Academy of Sciences (PNAS), describes the first-ever high-resolution three-dimensional structure of an endogenous reverse transcriptase – specifically human endogenous retrovirus-K (HERV-K) reverse transcriptase (RT). Past research has found a significant portion of the human genome is made up of repetitive elements that are relics of past viral infections, which are associated with a range of serious diseases, including cancer.

According to the…

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