Office of Undergraduate Research

Synthesis of fluorogenic probes for DNA mutation detection

The long-term goal of this problem is to develop methodologies that allow for rapid and accurate analysis of chromosome-based information. We are using a sequence-specific fluorogenic ligation system to develop a rapid, sensitive, and user-friendly method for gene mutation analysis capable of sensing nucleic acid sequences in living cells. Once the DNA-templated fluorogenic reaction is developed and PCR-free signal amplification is achieved, the new method will greatly increase the sensitivity and selectivity, allowing real-time reporting of the formed product. We have identified a DNA-templated fluorogenic ligation via click chemistry which was used for DNA mutation detection. The objective of this project is to develop reagent-free fluorogenic probes that will enable us to detect SNPs or quantify DNA lesions.

Tasks and responsibilities:

The student will be responsible for the synthesis of coumarin boronic acid analogue and characterizing these compounds with NMR and fluorescence spectroscopy. They will be incorporating these compounds into DNA and using the DNA probes for detecting thymidine glycol. This work will be done by collaborating with a graduate student.