Peter L. Davies, Ph.D., FRSC
Canada Research Chair in Protein Engineering
Professor, School of Medicine
Dept of Biological and Molecular Sciences
Botterell Hall, Room 643
Canada K7L 3N6
Dr. Peter L. Davies
We are studying the relationship between structure and function in three different types of proteins: 1) antifreeze proteins (AFPs), which help organisms resist or tolerate freezing; 2) bacterial adhesins, which help their bacterial hosts bind and colonize specific surfaces; and 3) calpains, enzymes that selectively cut proteins within the cell in response to calcium signaling.
Included in our research on antifreeze proteins is the study of bacterial ice nucleation proteins, which cause frost damage to plants. Although they have the opposite function to antifreeze proteins – starting ice growth, rather than stopping it – there is evidence to suggest they both use a similar mechanism of action in organizing ice-like waters on the protein surface.
Our research projects involve bioinformatics, gene synthesis and cloning, the production and purification of natural and recombinant proteins, biophysical and structural analyses, cellular analyses, protein modeling and protein engineering.