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Use of cleavable fluorescent antibodies for highly multiplexed single cell in situ protein analysis

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The ability to profile proteins allows us to gain a deeper understanding of organization, regulation, and function of different biological systems. Many technologies are currently being used in order to accurately perform the protein profiling. Some of these technologies include

The ability to profile proteins allows us to gain a deeper understanding of organization, regulation, and function of different biological systems. Many technologies are currently being used in order to accurately perform the protein profiling. Some of these technologies include mass spectrometry, microarray based analysis, and fluorescence microscopy. Deeper analysis of these technologies have demonstrated limitations which have taken away from either the efficiency or the accuracy of the results. The objective of this project was to develop a technology in which highly multiplexed single cell in situ protein analysis can be completed in a comprehensive manner without the loss of the protein targets. This was accomplished in the span of 3 steps which is referred to as the immunofluorescence cycle. Antibodies with attached fluorophores with the help of novel azide-based cleavable linker are used to detect protein targets. Fluorescence imaging and data storage procedures are done on the targets and then the fluorophores are cleaved from the antibodies without the loss of the protein targets. Continuous cycles of the immunofluorescence procedure can help create a comprehensive and quantitative profile of the protein. The development of such a technique will not only help us understand biological systems such as solid tumor, brain tissues, and developing embryos. But it will also play a role in real-world applications such as signaling network analysis, molecular diagnosis and cellular targeted therapies.

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2016-12

Highly multiplexed single-cell in situ RNA and DNA analysis with biorthogonal cleavable fluorescent oligonucleotides

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The understanding of normal human physiology and disease pathogenesis shows great promise for progress with increasing ability to profile genomic loci and transcripts in single cells in situ. Using biorthogonal cleavable fluorescent oligonucleotides, a highly multiplexed single-cell in situ RNA

The understanding of normal human physiology and disease pathogenesis shows great promise for progress with increasing ability to profile genomic loci and transcripts in single cells in situ. Using biorthogonal cleavable fluorescent oligonucleotides, a highly multiplexed single-cell in situ RNA and DNA analysis is reported. In this report, azide-based cleavable linker connects oligonucleotides to fluorophores to show nucleic acids through in situ hybridization. Post-imaging, the fluorophores are effectively cleaved off in half an hour without loss of RNA or DNA integrity. Through multiple cycles of hybridization, imaging, and cleavage this approach proves to quantify thousands of different RNA species or genomic loci because of single-molecule sensitivity in single cells in situ. Different nucleic acids can be imaged by shown by multi-color staining in each hybridization cycle, and that multiple hybridization cycles can be run on the same specimen. It is shown that in situ analysis of DNA, RNA and protein can be accomplished using both cleavable fluorescent antibodies and oligonucleotides. The highly multiplexed imaging platforms will have the potential for wide applications in both systems biology and biomedical research. Thus, proving to be cost effective and time effective.

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2018-05

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In vitro selection of aptamers and protein

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Since Darwin popularized the evolution theory in 1895, it has been completed and studied through the years. Starting in 1990s, evolution at molecular level has been used to discover functional molecules while studying the origin of functional molecules in nature

Since Darwin popularized the evolution theory in 1895, it has been completed and studied through the years. Starting in 1990s, evolution at molecular level has been used to discover functional molecules while studying the origin of functional molecules in nature by mimicing the natural selection process in laboratory. Along this line, my Ph.D. dissertation focuses on the in vitro selection of two important biomolecules, deoxynucleotide acid (DNA) and protein with binding properties. Chapter two focuses on in vitro selection of DNA. Aptamers are single-stranded nucleic acids that generated from a random pool and fold into stable three-dimensional structures with ligand binding sites that are complementary in shape and charge to a desired target. While aptamers have been selected to bind a wide range of targets, it is generally thought that these molecules are incapable of discriminating strongly alkaline proteins due to the attractive forces that govern oppositely charged polymers. By employing negative selection step to eliminate aptamers that bind with off-target through charge unselectively, an aptamer that binds with histone H4 protein with high specificity (>100 fold)was generated. Chapter four focuses on another functional molecule: protein. It is long believed that complex molecules with different function originated from simple progenitor proteins, but very little is known about this process. By employing a previously selected protein that binds and catalyzes ATP, which is the first and only protein that was evolved completely from random pool and has a unique α/β-fold protein scaffold, I fused random library to the C-terminus of this protein and evolved a multi-domain protein with decent properties. Also, in chapter 3, a unique bivalent molecule was generated by conjugating peptides that bind different sites on the protein with nucleic acids. By using the ligand interactions by nucleotide conjugates technique, off-the shelf peptide was transferred into high affinity protein capture reagents that mimic the recognition properties of natural antibodies. The designer synthetic antibody amplifies the binding affinity of the individual peptides by ∼1000-fold to bind Grb2 with a Kd of 2 nM, and functions with high selectivity in conventional pull-down assays from HeLa cell lysates.

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2013