In vitro selection of aptamers and protein
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.
- Jiang, Bing (Author)
- Chaput, John C (Thesis advisor)
- Chen, Julian (Committee member)
- Liu, Yan (Committee member)
- Arizona State University (Publisher)