Structure-guided drug development for treatment of rifampin-resistant TB

X-ray crystallographic study of the mechanism of transcription

Cryo-EM to capture structures of macromoles in transcription process

X-ray crystal structure of RNA polymerase and DksA/ppGpp complex

Bacteriophage N4 RNA polymerase

Welcome to the Murakami Lab at Penn State University

Our research interests are centered on understanding the mechanism of gene expression by the enzyme RNA polymerase. We apply X-ray crystallography and cryo-electron microscopy techniques to reveal three-dimensional structures of bacterial, archaeal and bacteriophage RNA polymerases for elucidating the mechanism of RNA transcription and its regulation.

Open Positions (Postdoc, Graduate and Undergraduate students)

Latest news:

February 7, 2023: A paper reporting the allosteric mechanism of NusG-dependent transcription pausing is published (PNAS).

January 1, 2023: Natalie Smith (MCIBS) and George Fordjour (BMMB) joined the Murakami lab as graduate students

February 4, 2021: A paper reporting the nucleotide selection mechanism by bacterial RNA polymerase is published (Nature Communications).

January 22, 2021: A paper reporting the cryo-EM study of E. coli RNA polymerase and ribosomal RNA promoter complex is published (Nature Communications). This study showed several new structures for understanding the rRNA transcription expression and regulation, which is vital for life. Press release. Interview.

December 18, 2020: A manuscript reporting the structure and function of HelD, RNA polymerase binding ATP-dependent helicase is published. URee Chon, a former undergrad in my lab determined the X-ray crystal structure of a part of HelD.

November 30, 2020: A manuscript reporting the structure and function of archaeal general transcription factor TFEα is published.

November 25, 2020: Katsu Murakami named a fellow of the American Association for the Advancement of Science (AAAS).

June 9, 2020: Yeonoh Shin presented a poster at the CHESS Users’ meeting and won a poster award. Congratulations!

May 9, 2020: Yeonoh Shin and Catherine Sutherland graduated Penn State BMMB program. Congratulations!

May 6, 2020: A manuscript reporting structural basis of ribosomal RNA transcription regulation is submitted. BioRxiv

March 1, 2020: Rishi Vishwakarma joined the Murakami and Babitzke’s labs as a research assistant professor. Welcome to Penn State!

Feb 21, 2020: Yeonoh passed his Ph. D. thesis defense. Congratulations!