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Chem Sci. 2017 Feb 1;8(2):1658-1664. doi: 10.1039/c6sc04086a. Epub 2016 Nov 16.

Design of a synthetic luminescent probe from a biomolecule binding domain: selective detection of AU-rich mRNA sequences.

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Univ. Grenoble Alpes , LCBM/PMB , F-38000 Grenoble , France.
CNRS , LCBM/PMB , UMR 5249 , F-38000 Grenoble , France.
CEA , BIG-CBM , PMB , F-38000 Grenoble , France . Email:
Department of Pharmaceutical Sciences , School of Pharmacy , University of Maryland , Baltimore , Maryland 21201-1180 , USA . Email:
Univ. Grenoble Alpes , INAC-SyMMES , F-38000 Grenoble , France.
CEA , INAC-SyMMES , F-38000 Grenoble , France.


We report the design of a luminescent sensor based upon the zinc finger (ZF) protein TIS11d, that allows for the selective time-resolved detection of the UUAUUUAUU sequence of the 3'-untranslated region of messenger RNA. This sensor is composed of the tandem ZF RNA binding domain of TIS11d functionalized with a luminescent Tb3+ complex on one of the ZFs and a sensitizing antenna on the other. This work provides the proof of principle that an RNA binding protein can be re-engineered as an RNA sensor and, more generally, that tunable synthetic luminescent probes for biomolecules can be obtained by modifying biomolecule-binding domains.

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