Enhanced DNA-Recognition Modes through Design of Synthetic-Biological Entities with Expanded Chemical Repertoire


The goal of this project is to use the principles of synthetic biology for the creation of novelfunctionalities in the interplay of DNA and proteins. We will devise high-throughput methods toexpand the chemical repertoire of DNA-binding protein scaffolds and develop screening techniquesto search for target functions in massive parallel fashion. We hope to discover novel, geneticallyencodable DNA receptors that overcome limitations of natural protein scaffolds. Specifically, we willintroduce chemical functions that feature new or improved modes to recognize the information storedin the sequence, chemical modification or conformation of DNA. Such receptors would representhighly versatile tools to reengineer key biological processes that are based on DNA recognitionevents. This could be achieved not only by binding to key DNA elements but also by using thedeveloped receptors as anchor entities to guide additional functionality - such as catalytic activity,affinity tags or biophysical probes - to the locus of interest. Given the paramount role of DNArecognition, this approach could lead to improved strategies in cancer drug development,bioanalytics, genome engineering and gene therapy.&

  • Zukunftskolleg
Funding sources
Name Finanzierungstyp Kategorie Project no.
Exzellenzinitiative third-party funds research funding program 408/11
Further information
Period: 01.01.2011 – 30.06.2012