Matching Items (18)

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Protein Design and Engineering Using the Fluorescent Non-canonical Amino Acid L-(7-hydroxycoumarin-4-yl)ethylglycine

Description

Proteins are, arguably, the most complicated molecular machines found in nature. From the receptor proteins that decorate the exterior of cell membranes to enzymes that catalyze the slowest of chemical

Proteins are, arguably, the most complicated molecular machines found in nature. From the receptor proteins that decorate the exterior of cell membranes to enzymes that catalyze the slowest of chemical reactions, proteins perform a wide variety of essential biological functions. A reductionist view of proteins as a macromolecular group, however, may hold that they simply interact with other chemical species. Notably, proteins interact with other proteins, other biological macromolecules, small molecules, and ions. This in turn makes proteins uniquely qualified for use technological use as sensors of said chemical species (biosensors). Several methods have been developed to convert proteins into biosensors. Many of these techniques take advantage of fluorescence spectroscopy because it is a fast, non-invasive, non-destructive and highly sensitive method that also allows for spatiotemporal control. This, however, requires that first a fluorophore be added to a target protein. Several methods for achieving this have been developed from large, genetically encoded autofluorescent protein tags, to labeling with small molecule fluorophores using bioorthogonal chemical handles, to genetically encoded fluorescent non-canonical amino acids (fNCAA). In recent years, the fNCAA, L-(7-hydroxycoumarin-4yl)ethylglycine (7-HCAA) has been used in to develop several types of biosensors.
The dissertation I present here specifically addresses the use of the fNCAA L-(7-hydroxycoumarin-4-yl)ethylglycine (7-HCAA) in protein-based biosensors. I demonstrate 7-HCAA’s ability to act as a Förster resonance energy transfer (FRET) acceptor with tryptophan as the FRET donor in a single protein containing multiple tryptophans. I the describe efforts to elucidate—through both spectroscopic and structural characterization—interactions within a 7-HCAA containing protein that governs 7-HCAA fluorescence. Finally, I present a top-down computational design strategy for incorporating 7-HCAA into proteins that takes advantage of previously described interactions. These reports show the applicability of 7-HCAA and the wider class of fNCAAs as a whole for their use of rationally designed biosensors.

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Created

Date Created
  • 2020

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Study of ribosomes having modifications in the peptidyltransferase center using non-alpha-L-amino acids and synthesis and biological evaluation of topopyrones

Description

The ribosome is a ribozyme and central to the biosynthesis of proteins in all organisms. It has a strong bias against non-alpha-L-amino acids, such as alpha-D-amino acids and beta-amino acids.

The ribosome is a ribozyme and central to the biosynthesis of proteins in all organisms. It has a strong bias against non-alpha-L-amino acids, such as alpha-D-amino acids and beta-amino acids. Additionally, the ribosome is only able to incorporate one amino acid in response to one codon. It has been demonstrated that reengineering of the peptidyltransferase center (PTC) of the ribosome enabled the incorporation of both alpha-D-amino acids and beta-amino acids into full length protein. Described in Chapter 2 are five modified ribosomes having modifications in the peptidyltrasnferase center in the 23S rRNA. These modified ribosomes successfully incorporated five different beta-amino acids (2.1 - 2.5) into E. coli dihydrofolate reductase (DHFR). The second project (Chapter 3) focused on the study of the modified ribosomes facilitating the incorporation of the dipeptide glycylphenylalanine (3.25) and fluorescent dipeptidomimetic 3.26 into DHFR. These ribosomes also had modifications in the peptidyltransferase center in the 23S rRNA of the 50S ribosomal subunit. The modified DHFRs having beta-amino acids 2.3 and 2.5, dipeptide glycylphenylalanine (3.25) and dipeptidomimetic 3.26 were successfully characterized by the MALDI-MS analysis of the peptide fragments produced by "in-gel" trypsin digestion of the modified proteins. The fluorescent spectra of the dipeptidomimetic 3.26 and modified DHFR having fluorescent dipeptidomimetic 3.26 were also measured. The type I and II DNA topoisomerases have been firmly established as effective molecular targets for many antitumor drugs. A "classical" topoisomerase I or II poison acts by misaligning the free hydroxyl group of the sugar moiety of DNA and preventing the reverse transesterfication reaction to religate DNA. There have been only two classes of compounds, saintopin and topopyrones, reported as dual topoisomerase I and II poisons. Chapter 4 describes the synthesis and biological evaluation of topopyrones. Compound 4.10, employed at 20 µM, was as efficient as 0.5 uM camptothecin, a potent topoisomerase I poison, in stabilizing the covalent binary complex (~30%). When compared with a known topoisomerase II poison, etoposide (at 0.5 uM), topopyorone 4.10 produced similar levels of stabilized DNA-enzyme binary complex (~34%) at 5 uM concentration.

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Created

Date Created
  • 2013

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Synthesis of redox active neuroprotective therapeutic agents

Description

Mitochondria are energy-producing organelles present in eukaryotic cells. Energy as adenosine triphosphate (ATP) is produced at the end of a series of electron transfers called the electron transport chain (ETC).

Mitochondria are energy-producing organelles present in eukaryotic cells. Energy as adenosine triphosphate (ATP) is produced at the end of a series of electron transfers called the electron transport chain (ETC). Such a highly coordinated and regulated series of electron transfer reactions give rise to a small percentage of electron leakage which, by the subsequent reduction of molecular oxygen, produce superoxide anions (O2.-). These anions initiate the production of additional highly reactive oxygen-containing radicals commonly known as reactive oxygen species (ROS). Although cells are equipped with endogenous antioxidant systems to minimize ROS accumulation, these endogenous defense systems become inadequate when ROS generation is increased. When ROS production occurs in excess, the cell is said to be under oxidative stress. Unchecked ROS production causes damage to cellular macromolecules, which in turn leads to cell death. Dysfunctional mitochondria and subsequent cell degeneration are a common cause of neurodegenerative diseases such as Friedreich’s ataxia (FRDA) and Alzheimer’s disease (AD). Therefore, targeting the mitochondria by neuroprotective drugs is imperative for the treatment of such diseases. In Chapter 1, the functioning of the ETC is described. Moreover, excessive ROS production and its consequences are also described.

FRDA is a progressive neurodegenerative disease caused by insufficient expression of frataxin (FXN). FXN is instrumental in the assembly of iron-sulfur clusters, which in turn are critical for the functioning of the ETC enzyme complexes. Therapeutic agents which, in addition to being antioxidants also increase FXN, can be good drugs to counter FRDA. In Chapter 2, the synthesis of phenothiazine analogues are described. Moreover, their efficacy as antioxidants and their ability to increase FXN are described. Finally, the synthesis of a reduced salt form of one analogue and its ability to cross the blood brain barrier (BBB) in mouse models of the disease is also described.

In Chapter 3, to discover potent neuroprotective drugs, a pair of regioisomeric benzoquinone analogues has been synthesized. The compounds were tested for their efficacy as antioxidants. Additionally, two pyrimidinol based redox cores were analyzed electrochemically to enable a better understanding of the mechanism of action of the multifunctional radical quencher (MRQ) class of antioxidants.

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Created

Date Created
  • 2019

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Structure activity studies of quinones and analogues

Description

Many natural and synthetic quinones have shown biological and pharmacological activity. Some of them have also shown anticancer activity. Ubiquinone (CoQ10) which is a natural quinone, is a component of

Many natural and synthetic quinones have shown biological and pharmacological activity. Some of them have also shown anticancer activity. Ubiquinone (CoQ10) which is a natural quinone, is a component of the electron transport chain and participates in generation of ATP (adenosine triphosphate). Cellular oxidative stress is key feature of many neurodegenerative diseases such as Friedreich's ataxia, Alzheimer's disease and Parkinson's disease. The increased generation of reactive oxygen species damages cell membranes and leads to cell death. Analogues of ubiquinone in the form of pyrimidinols and pyridinols, were effective in protecting Friedreich's ataxia lymphocytes from oxidative stress- induced cell death. There were some structural features which could be identified that should be useful for the design of the analogues for cellular protection against oxidative stress. There are quinones such as doxorubicin, daunomycin and topopyrones which have anticancer activity. Here I evaluated topopyrone analogues which poison both topoisomerases I and II. The topopyrone analogues were lethal to human breast cancer cells, but these analogues were not as potent as camptothecin.

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Created

Date Created
  • 2011

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Synthesis of multifunctional radical quenchers (MRQ's)

Description

Mitochondria produce most of the ATP needed for the cell as an energy source. It is well known that cellular respiration results in oxidative damage to the cell due to

Mitochondria produce most of the ATP needed for the cell as an energy source. It is well known that cellular respiration results in oxidative damage to the cell due to the production of reactive oxygen species (ROS). Mitochondrial dysfunction is believed to contribute to a number of degenerative diseases; because of this the mitochondrial respiratory chain is considered as potential drug target. A few series of idebenone analogues with quinone, pyridinol and pyrimidinol redox cores have been synthesized and evaluated as antioxidants able to protect cellular integrity and, more specifically, mitochondrial function. The compounds exhibited a range of activities. The activities observed were used for the design of analogues with enhanced properties as antioxidants. Compounds were identified which provide better protection against oxidative stress than idebenone, and it is thought that they do so catalytically.

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Date Created
  • 2012

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Analysis of small molecule interactions in biological systems: the study of potential treatments for addiction and disease

Description

The ability to manipulate the interaction between small molecules and biological macromolecules towards the study of disease pathogenesis has become a very important part of research towards treatment options for

The ability to manipulate the interaction between small molecules and biological macromolecules towards the study of disease pathogenesis has become a very important part of research towards treatment options for various diseases. The work described here shows both the use of DNA oligonucleotides as carriers for a nicotine hapten small molecule, and the use of microsomes to study the stability of compounds derived to treat mitochondrial diseases.

Nicotine addiction is a worldwide epidemic because nicotine is one of the most widely used addictive substances. It is linked to early death, typically in the form of heart or lung disease. A new vaccine conjugate against nicotine held within a DNA tetrahedron delivery system has been studied. For this purpose, several strands of DNA, conjugated with a modified dTpT having three or six carbon atom alkynyl linkers, have been synthesized. These strands have later been conjugated to three separate hapten small molecules to analyze which conjugates formed would be optimal for further testing in vivo.

Mitochondrial diseases are hard to treat, given that there are so many different variations to treat. There is no one compound that can treat all mitochondrial and neurodegenerative diseases; however, improvements can be made to compounds currently under study to improve the conditions of those afflicted. A significant issue leading to compounds failing in clinical trials is insufficient metabolic stability. Many compounds have good biological activity, but once introduced to an animal, are not stable enough to have any effect. Here, several synthesized compounds have been evaluated for metabolic stability, and several showed improved stability, while maintaining biological activity.

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Created

Date Created
  • 2016

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Small molecules as probes of biological systems

Description

The manipulation of biological targets using synthetic compounds has been the focal point of medicinal chemistry. The work described herein centers on the synthesis of organic small molecules that act

The manipulation of biological targets using synthetic compounds has been the focal point of medicinal chemistry. The work described herein centers on the synthesis of organic small molecules that act either as probes for studying protein conformational changes or DNA–protein interaction, or as multifunctional radical quenchers.

Fluorescent labeling is of paramount importance to biological studies of proteins. For the development of new extrinsic small fluorophores, a series of tryptophan analogues has been designed and synthesized. Their pdCpA derivatives have been synthesized for tRNA activation and in vitro protein synthesis. The photophysical properties of the tryptophan (Trp) analogues have been examined, some of which can be selectively monitored even in the presence of multiple native tryptophan residues. Further, some of the Trp analogues form efficient FRET pairs with acceptors such as acridon-2-ylalanine (Acd) or L-(7-hydroxycoumarin-4-yl)ethylglycine (HCO) for the selective study of conformational changes in proteins.

Molecules which can bind with high sequence selectivity to a chosen target in a gene sequence are of interest for the development of gene therapy, diagnostic devices for genetic analysis, and as molecular tools for nucleic acid manipulations. Stereoselective synthesis of different alanyl nucleobase amino acids is described. Their pdCpA derivatives have been synthesized for tRNA activation and site-specific incorporation into the DNA-binding protein RRM1 of hnRNP LL. It is proposed that the nucleobase moieties in the protein may specifically recognize base sequence in the i-motif DNA through H-bonding and base-stacking interactions.

The mitochondrial respiratory chain accumulates more oxidative damage than any other organelle within the cell. Dysfunction of this organelle is believed to drive the progression of many diseases, thus mitochondria are an important potential drug target. Reactive oxygen species (ROS) are generated when electrons from the respiratory chain escape and interact with oxygen. ROS can react with proteins, lipids or DNA causing cell death. For the development of effective neuroprotective drugs, a series of N-hydroxy-4-pyridones have been designed and synthesized as CoQ10 analogues. All the analogues synthesized were evaluated for their ability to quench lipid peroxidation and reactive oxygen species (ROS).

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Created

Date Created
  • 2016

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Synthesis, biochemical and pharmacological evaluation of rationally designed multifunctional radical quenchers

Description

Mitochondria are crucial intracellular organelles which play a pivotal role in providing energy to living organisms in the form of adenosine triphosphate (ATP). The mitochondrial electron transport chain (ETC) coupled

Mitochondria are crucial intracellular organelles which play a pivotal role in providing energy to living organisms in the form of adenosine triphosphate (ATP). The mitochondrial electron transport chain (ETC) coupled with oxidative phosphorylation (OX-PHOS) transforms the chemical energy of amino acids, fatty acids and sugars to ATP. The mitochondrial electron transport system consumes nearly 90% of the oxygen used by the cell. Reactive oxygen species (ROS) in the form of superoxide anions (O2*-) are generated as byproduct of cellular metabolism due to leakage of electrons from complex I and complex III to oxygen. Under normal conditions, the effects of ROS are offset by a variety of antioxidants (enzymatic and non-enzymatic).

Mitochondrial dysfunction has been proposed in the etiology of various pathologies, including cardiovascular and neurodegenerative diseases, such as Alzheimer's disease and Parkinson's disease, ischemia-reperfusion (IR) injury, diabetes and aging. To treat these disorders, it is imperative to target mitochondria, especially the electron transport chain. One of the methodologies currently used for the treatment of mitochondrial and neurodegenerative diseases where endogenous antioxidant defenses are inadequate for protecting against ROS involves the administration of exogenous antioxidants.

As part of our pursuit of effective neuroprotective drugs, a series of pyridinol and pyrimidinol analogues have been rationally designed and synthesized. All the analogues were evaluated for their ability to quench lipid peroxidation and reactive oxygen species (ROS), and preserve mitochondrial membrane potential (Δm) and support ATP synthesis. These studies are summarized in Chapter 2.

Drug discovery and lead identification can be reinforced by assessing the metabolic fate of orally administered drugs using simple microsomal incubation experiments. Accordingly, in vitro microsomal studies were designed and carried out using bovine liver microsomes to screen available pyridinol and pyrimidinol analogues for their metabolic lability. The data obtained was utilized for an initial assessment of potential bioavailability of the compounds screened and is summarized fully in Chapter 3.

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Created

Date Created
  • 2014

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Synthesis and evaluation of multifunctional radical quenchers for the protection of mitochondrial function

Description

Mitochondria produce the majority portion of ATP required in eukaryotic cells. ATP is generated through a process known as oxidative phosphorylation, through an pathway consisting five multi subunit proteins (complex

Mitochondria produce the majority portion of ATP required in eukaryotic cells. ATP is generated through a process known as oxidative phosphorylation, through an pathway consisting five multi subunit proteins (complex I-IV and ATP synthase), embedded inside the mitochondrial membrane. Mitochondrial electron transport chain dysfunction increases reactive oxygen species in the cell and causes several serious disorders. Described herein are the synthesis of antioxidant molecules to reduce the effects in an already dysfunctional system. Also described is the study of the mitochondrial electron transport chain to understand the mechanism of action of a library of antioxidants. Illustrated in chapter 1 is the general history of research on mitochondrial dysfunction and reported ways to ameliorate them. Chapter 2 describes the design and synthesis of a series of compounds closely resembling the redox-active quinone core of the natural product geldanamycin. Geldanamycin has been reported to confer cytoprotection to FRDA lymphocytes in a dose dependent manner under conditions of induced oxidative stress. A library of rationally designed derivatives has been synthesized as a part of our pursuit of a better neuroprotective drug. Chapter 3 describes the design and synthesis of a library of pyrimidinol analogues. Compounds of this type have demonstrated the ability to quench reactive oxygen species and sustain mitochondrial membrane potential. Described herein are our efforts to increase their metabolic stability and total ATP production. It is crucial to understand the nature of interaction between a potential drug molecule and the mitochondrial electron transport chain to enable the design and synthesis a better therapeutic candidates. Chapter 4 describes a part of the enzymatic

binding studies between a molecular library synthesized in our laboratory and the mitochondrial electron transport chain using sub mitochondrial particles (SMP).

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Created

Date Created
  • 2015

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Synthesis of nitrogen heterocyclic compounds for therapeutic applications

Description

Reactive oxygen species (ROS) are a series of molecules, ions, and radicals derived from oxygen that possess remarkable reactivity. They act as signaling molecules when their concentration in cells is

Reactive oxygen species (ROS) are a series of molecules, ions, and radicals derived from oxygen that possess remarkable reactivity. They act as signaling molecules when their concentration in cells is within a normal range. When the levels of ROS increase, reaching a concentration in which the antioxidants cannot readily quench them, oxidative stress will affect the cells. These excessive levels of ROS result in direct or indirect ROS-mediated damage of proteins, nucleic acids, and lipids. Excessive oxidative stress, particularly in chronic inflammation, has been linked with mutations and carcinogenesis. One of the main targets of ROS in severe oxidative stress is mitochondrial DNA (mtDNA). The synthesis of analogues of alpha-tocopherol is described as potential compounds with the ability to remediate defective mitochondria. An interesting possibility for eradicating cancer cells is to selectively target them with oxidative species while avoiding any deleterious effects on healthy cells. To accomplish this, analogues of the beta-hydroxyhistidine moiety of the antitumor agent bleomycin (BLM) were synthesized. The first part of this thesis focuses on the synthesis of simplified analogues of alpha-tocopherol. These analogues possess a bicyclic pyridinol as the antioxidant core and an alkyl group as the lipophilic chain to mimic alpha-tocopherol. Additionally, analogues with a completely oxidized pyridinol core were synthesized. Some of these analogues showed promising properties against ROS production and lipid peroxidation. The protection they conferred was shown to be tightly regulated by their concentration. The second part of this thesis focuses on the synthesis of analogues of beta-hydroxyhistidine. BLMs are glycopeptides that possess anticancer activity and have been used to treat testicular carcinomas, Hodgkin's lymphoma, and squamous cell carcinomas. The activity of BLM is based on the degradation of DNA, or possibly RNA, caused by a Fe(II)-BLM complex in the presence of O2. The beta-hydroxyhistidine moiety of BLM contributes to metal coordination via two ligands: the N-3 nitrogen atom of imidazole and possibly the nitrogen atom of the amide. A series of beta-hydroxyhistidine analogues has successfully been synthesized.

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Agent

Created

Date Created
  • 2014