DNA Binding Proteins and Drug Delivery Vehicles: Tales of Elephants and Snakes

Author(s): Richard L. Karpel.

Journal Name: Current Protein & Peptide Science

Volume 16 , Issue 8 , 2015

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Abstract:

We compare the DNA-interactive properties of bacteriophage T4 gene 32 protein (gp32) with those of crotamine, a component of the venom of the South American rattlesnake. Gene 32 protein is a classical single-stranded DNA binding protein that has served as a model for this class of proteins. We discuss its biological functions, structure, binding specificities, and how it controls its own expression. In addition, we delineate the roles of the structural domains of gp32 and how they regulate the protein’s various activities. Crotamine, a component of the venom of the South American rattlesnake, is probably not a DNA binding protein in nature, but clearly shows significant DNA binding in vitro. Crotamine has been shown to selectively disrupt rapidly dividing cells and this specificity has been demonstrated for crotamine-facilitated delivery of plasmid DNA Thus, crotamine, or a variant of the protein, could have important clinical and/or diagnostic roles. Understanding its DNA binding properties may therefore lead to more effective drug delivery vehicles.

Keywords: DNA binding proteins, drug delivery, gene 32 protein, crotamine.

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Article Details

VOLUME: 16
ISSUE: 8
Year: 2015
Page: [718 - 726]
Pages: 9
DOI: 10.2174/1389203716666150505231019
Price: $58

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