Sitespecific evolution of casein proteins Academic Article uri icon


  • Milk is a unique ensemble of molecules and structures emerging from 200 million years of evolution under the constant selective pressure of nourishing infants. The vulnerability of infants has been a pervasive evolutionary pressure on milk, subject to feasible maternal limitations in the energy and nutrient cost. Understanding the footprint of this Darwinian process is the basis of ongoing bioinformatics studies on the genomes of lactating mammals. To address fundamental questions related to the comparative rates of evolution in milk genes, this project has been leveraging bioinformatics tools such as clustalw, bioedit, and PAML. Also, a postgres database and custom programs are used to organize the data, script the processing, and calculate the statistics. Studies were designed to examine molecular fragments released during digestion that might manifest bioactivity. This would distinguish these proteins as nutritional agents, in contrast to most proteins whose functionality is only associated with the intact form. Gene regions of interest are compared to bioactive peptides evidenced by in vitro experiments, mined from the literature.Funded by UC Discovery and the California Dairy Research Foundation.

published proceedings

  • The FASEB Journal

author list (cited authors)

  • Martin, W. F., Lemay, D., Rijnkels, M., & German, B.

citation count

  • 0

complete list of authors

  • Martin, William Fred||Lemay, Danielle||Rijnkels, Monique||German, Bruce

publication date

  • April 2010