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Bioengineering Seminar Series: Harry Bermudez
Friday, February 24, 2012
11:00 a.m.-12:00 p.m.
Room 1200 Jeong H. Kim Engineering Bldg.
For More Information:
Professor Silvia Muro

DNA-Based Vehicles for Delivery of Functional Nucleic Acids and Proteins

Harry Bermudez
Department of Polymer Science and Engineering
University of Massachusetts Amherst

While the ability of DNA to form discrete 3-dimensional nanostructures is well-established, we have revealed a significant effect of nanoscale presentation on enzymatic activity [Keum and Bermudez, 2009]. These effects can be understood in the context where the nanostructure opposes local distortions of the DNA helical structure.

Recognizing their inherent advantages over synthetic systems, we have subsequently explored the use of these DNA self-assemblies as a delivery platform. Our approach has been to design and assemble DNA tetrahedra containing protruding loops of single-stranded DNA that encode antisense sequences, including a cancer-relevant target protein [Keum, Ahn, and Bermudez, 2011]. We will also discuss more recent efforts are towards using pH-responsive DNA motifs to control the disassembly of these nanostructures, thereby releasing cargo molecules under control of the natural intracellular acidification process.

This Event is For: Graduate • Faculty • Post-Docs

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