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Class-specific bioreceptors are highly desirable for recognizing structurally similar small molecules, but the generation of such affinity elements has proven challenging. We here develop a novel 'parallel-and-serial' selection strategy for isolating class-specific oligonucleotide-based receptors (aptamers) in vitro. This strategy first entails parallel selection to selectively enrich cross-reactive binding sequences, followed by serial selection that enriches aptamers binding to a designated target family. As a demonstration, we isolate a class-specific DNA aptamer against a family of designer drugs known as synthetic cathinones. The aptamer binds to 12 diverse synthetic cathinones with nanomolar affinity and does not respond to 11 structurally similar non-target compounds, some of which differ from the cathinone targets by a single atom. This is the first account of an aptamer exhibiting a combination of broad target cross-reactivity, high affinity and remarkable specificity. Leveraging the qualities of this aptamer, instantaneous colorimetric detection of synthetic cathinones at nanomolar concentrations in biological samples is achieved. Our findings significantly expand the binding capabilities of aptamers as class-specific bioreceptors and further demonstrate the power of rationally designed selection strategies for isolating customized aptamers with desired binding profiles. We believe that our aptamer isolation approach can be broadly applied to isolate class-specific aptamers for various small molecule families.
This article was published in the following journal.
Name: Nucleic acids research
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Part of a MESSENGER RNA molecule that undergoes a conformation change upon binding a specific metabolite or other small molecule thereby regulating the messenger RNA's transcription, post-transcriptional processing, transport, translation, or stability in response to varying levels of the metabolite or other small molecule.
In vitro method for producing large amounts of specific DNA or RNA fragments of defined length and sequence from small amounts of short oligonucleotide flanking sequences (primers). The essential steps include thermal denaturation of the double-stranded target molecules, annealing of the primers to their complementary sequences, and extension of the annealed primers by enzymatic synthesis with DNA polymerase. The reaction is efficient, specific, and extremely sensitive. Uses for the reaction include disease diagnosis, detection of difficult-to-isolate pathogens, mutation analysis, genetic testing, DNA sequencing, and analyzing evolutionary relationships.
Synthetic transcripts of a specific DNA molecule or fragment, made by an in vitro transcription system. This cRNA can be labeled with radioactive uracil and then used as a probe. (King & Stansfield, A Dictionary of Genetics, 4th ed)
An 11-kDa protein associated with the outer membrane of many cells including lymphocytes. It is the small subunit of the MHC class I molecule. Association with beta 2-microglobulin is generally required for the transport of class I heavy chains from the endoplasmic reticulum to the cell surface. Beta 2-microglobulin is present in small amounts in serum, csf, and urine of normal people, and to a much greater degree in the urine and plasma of patients with tubular proteinemia, renal failure, or kidney transplants.
Hybridization of a nucleic acid sample to a very large set of oligonucleotide probes, which are attached to a solid support, to determine sequence or to detect variations in a gene sequence or expression or for gene mapping.
Bioinformatics is the application of computer software and hardware to the management of biological data to create useful information. Computers are used to gather, store, analyze and integrate biological and genetic information which can then be applied...
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