Peptide Nucleic Acids (PNA): Synthesis And Applications.



Peptide Nucleic Acids (PNA): Synthesis And Applications.


Michele Saviano


Peptide Nucleic Acid, Structural characterization, Trascription factors


Istituto di Biostrutture e Bioimmagini-CNR Napoli


Peptide nucleic acids are oligonucleotide mimics characterised by high chemical and enzymatic stability, high specificity and affinity toward complementary DNA/RNA. Due to their remarkable chemical and biological properties, such as stability to harsh acidic or basic conditions, stability to nucleases and proteases, and also thanks to their high specificity and selectivity of binding towards complementary DNA and RNA, PNAs have been widely used as tools for interfering in gene expression and in general in all applications based on the hybridisation of PNA to DNA/RNA With the aim to improve PNA's cellular uptake and solubility, they have been conjugated to peptides and oligonucleotides. PNA conjugates are used for 1) the targeting of mRNA in antisense application aimed at the inhibition of mRNA translation process and therefore at the inhibition of the synthesis of a determined protein (e.g. viral proteins, proteins involved in various diseases such as cancer) 2) targeting of DNA as antigene agents for the inhibition of the transcription process; 3) targeting of proteins as transcription factors (TF) to interfere with the expression of genes regulated by the targeted TF. Furthermore PNA found application as biotechnological tools, for example for the identification of Single Nucleotide Polimorphism (SNP).
Our work is focused on the desing, synthesis and stuctural characterization of PNA, PNA conjugated to peptides and oligonucleotides and modified PNAs.

V. Menchise, et al Proceedings of the National Academy of Sciences of the United States of America (2003), 100(21), 12021-12026
S. Pensatoet al Expert Opinion on Biological Therapy (2007), 7(8), 1219-1232
S. Pensato et al PNA zipper as a dimerization tool: development of a bZip mimic Biopolymers. (2010), 3(5), 434-41.


Michele Saviano
Telefono: 0039 080 5929148

Last Updated (Tuesday, 21 December 2010 15:59)