Book of Abstracts: Albany 2011
June 14-18 2011
©Adenine Press (2010)
Peptide Nucleic Acid (PNA) - Artificial DNA with Many Faces
The pseudo-peptidic DNA mimic PNA (peptide nucleic acid) discovered twenty years ago is still a subject of considerable interest in a range of scientific disciplines from prebiotic chemistry (origin of life) to drug discovery. With recent examples form these two very different areas, some of the faces of PNA will be illustrated. As both as first step towards a minimal chemical mimic of a peptidyl transferase translation system as well as in a prebiotic context of the evolution of translational mechanisms we have designed systems that allow PNA directed aminoacyl transfer (translation mimic). The properties and characteristic of these systems will be presented. Antisense PNA peptide conjugates targeting essential bacterial genes (such as acpP and ftsZ) have shown promise as potential antibacterials. However, improved bacterial delivery vehicles (which are compatible with safe and effective in vivo administration) are still highly warranted. Progress in discovering novel delivery peptides and in unravelling the mechanism of bacterial uptake of antibacterial PNA peptide conjugates will be presented.
Peter E. Nielsen
Department of Cellular and Molecular Medicine