Vicki Cameron

Professor Emerita, Biology
Speciality: Molecular Biology

She was also a faculty member in the Biochemistry program.

My laboratory was interested in the structure and function of a mitochondrially encoded protein required for cellular respiration and energy production.  Defects in mitochondrial function have been shown to be responsible for some inherited human diseases and may be related to aging.  The protein under investigation  (whose X-ray crystal structure is shown here) is subunit II of cytochromec oxidase.  This protein is very similar in all organisms, from yeast to humans.  By studying how changes in the structure of the protein affect its function in yeast, important information can be obtained about how the protein functions in all organisms, including humans.  (figure from http://www-bioc.rice.edu/~graham/CcO.html , the Cytochrome Oxidase Homepage).