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ACS Chem Biol. 2014 Jan 17;9(1):134-8. doi: 10.1021/cb400617q. Epub 2013 Oct 25.

Human protamine-1 as an MRI reporter gene based on chemical exchange.

Author information

1
Russell H. Morgan Department of Radiology and Radiological Science, The Johns Hopkins University School of Medicine , Baltimore, Maryland 21231, United States.

Abstract

Genetically engineered reporters have revolutionized the understanding of many biological processes. MRI-based reporter genes can dramatically improve our ability to monitor dynamic gene expression and allow coregistration of subcellular genetic information with high-resolution anatomical images. We have developed a biocompatible MRI reporter gene based on a human gene, the human protamine-1 (hPRM1). The arginine-rich hPRM1 (47% arginine residues) generates high MRI contrast based on the chemical exchange saturation transfer (CEST) contrast mechanism. The 51 amino acid-long hPRM1 protein was fully synthesized using microwave-assisted technology, and the CEST characteristics of this protein were compared to other CEST-based contrast agents. Both bacterial and human cells were engineered to express an optimized hPRM1 gene and showed higher CEST contrast compared to controls. Live cells expressing the hPRM1 reporter gene, and embedded in three-dimensional culture, also generated higher CEST contrast compared to wild-type live cells.

PMID:
24138139
PMCID:
PMC3985336
DOI:
10.1021/cb400617q
[Indexed for MEDLINE]
Free PMC Article

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