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Curr Opin Chem Biol. 2015 Jun;26:80-8. doi: 10.1016/j.cbpa.2015.02.015. Epub 2015 Mar 8.

Chemical ligation methods for the tagging of DNA-encoded chemical libraries.

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X-Chem Pharmaceuticals, 100 Beaver Street, Waltham, MA 02453, USA. Electronic address:
X-Chem Pharmaceuticals, 100 Beaver Street, Waltham, MA 02453, USA.


The generation of DNA-encoded chemical libraries requires the unimolecular association of multiple encoding oligonucleotides with encoded chemical entities during combinatorial synthesis processes. This has traditionally been achieved using enzymatic ligation. We discuss a range of chemical ligation methods that provide alternatives to enzymatic ligation. These chemical ligation methods include the generation of modified internucleotide linkages that support polymerase translocation and other modified linkages that while not supporting the translocation of polymerases can also be used to generate individual cDNA molecules containing encoded chemical information specifying individual library members. We also describe which of these approaches have been successfully utilized for the preparation of DNA-encoded chemical libraries and those that were subsequently used for the discovery of inhibitors.

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