Protein function is intimately connected with supramolecular chemistry: Substrate processing and various levels of regulation involve specific noncovalent interactions. Likewise, protein folding, assembly and protein-protein interactions are governed by intermolecular forces and their specific inhibition or support represents a very promising area for external interference, with profound mechanistic and therapeutic implications.
The CRC aims at applying recent knowledge and methods from supramolecular chemistry to achieve specific interaction with proteins by artificial ligands.
The group of Dr. Barbara Sacca, principle investigator of the CRC1093, has now succeeded with the help of supramolecular chemistry to construct tiny, tailor-made DNA-nanocontainers entrapping target proteins in a specific fashion. Read More
[01.04.2017] Prof. Matthias Epple (CRC1093 project A5) was honored together with Prof. Astrid Westendorf from the University Clinics with an award in the category “Medicine and Science” at the second Health Forum in Essen. The price honours their development and application of inorganic nanoparticles to treat diseases like chronic inflammations and viral infections. Link
CRC 1093 Guest Scientist
Professor Kenneth Shea
[14.03.2017] Prof. Kenneth J. Shea from the University of California will join our CRC1093 as a guest scientist in June 2017. Professor Shea’s research interests are in polymer chemistry, materials research, nanoscience, synthetic and mechanistic organic chemistry. During his stay at the University of Duisburg-Essen he will give a talk which will focus on a project at the interface of materials chemistry and biology.
Laura Hartmann and Stefan Westermann join the CRC1093
[31.01.2017] Laura Hartmann, chair of Macromolecular Chemistry at the Heinrich Heine University Düsseldorf, and Stefan Westermann, chair of Molecular Genetics at the Faculty of Biology at the University of Duisburg-Essen, have recently joined the CRC1093 as associated members.
The research of Laura Hartmann focuses on the use of polymers as biomimetic molecules. She applies solid phase synthesis techniques in combination with classical polymer chemistry to create monodisperse, sequence-controlled oligo- and polymers. These so-called precision macromolecules can then be used for the controlled presentation of ligands such as sugars or peptides and lead to novel bioactive polymers for biotechnological and biomedical applications. Within the CRC, Laura Hartmann and her team will combine their synthetic platform with supramolecular binding motifs from the CRC and design novel multivalent, supramolecular ligands to target specific protein binding.
Stefan Westermann studies how chromosomes interact with microtubules, highly dynamic polymers of the cytoskeleton. The carefully regulated interplay between chromosomes and microtubules, provided by large protein complexes termed kinetochores, is the fundamental basis for error-free propagation of the genome during cell division. He has started to collaborate with several CRC members, to employ supramolecular chemistry to both mimic and manipulate key aspects of kinetochore-microtubule interactions in vitro. As his group combines biochemical reconstitution experiments with direct observation of microtubules using fluorescence microscopy techniques, acute manipulations with tailored supramolecular ligands promise to reveal novel mechanisms of chromosome segregation.
Molecular Tweezers and Protein Aggregation
Frank-Gerrit Klärner and Thomas Schrader have designed and optimized molecular tweezers with a unique structure which makes them selective for lysine and arginine residues. Their fruitful collaboration with Gal Bitan from the David Geffen School of Medicine at the University of California, Los Angeles, revealed the ability of these tweezers to inhibit aberrant peptide and protein aggregation, which is a common pathogenic feature of neurodegenerative diseases like Alzheimer’s, Parkinson’s or Transthyretin (TTR)-related Amyloidosis. Latest promising results offer the prospect of developing molecular tweezers as suitable drug candidates. Thomas Schrader, Frank-Gerrit Klärner and Gal Bitan, who was also an invited guest professor of our CRC, have now summarized the properties and the potential of these molecular tweezers in the renowned journal Chemical Communications: “Molecular tweezers for lysine and arginine – powerful inhibitors of pathologic protein aggregation”. This Feature Article carries the issue’s front cover.
Our second Graduate Student Symposium took place from 31st of August to 2nd of Septemberat the GHotel in Hannover. 45 graduate students from the CRC1093 of Duisburg-Essen and the CRC765 of Berlin discussed latest results within the field of supramolecular chemistry. Read More
"PLUS3" Grant from the Boehringer Ingelheim Foundation
CRC1093 Principal Investigator Dr. Elsa Sánchez-García received the prestigious “PLUS3” grant from the Boehringer Ingelheim Foundation. This programme supports her project focusing on the computational design of molecules with therapeutic potential. Read more
Drug Discovery and its Challenges
The drug discovery workshop provides insight into applied research in the pharmaceutical industry from target identification to clinical studies and emphasises the challenges of classical and modern screening methods. The workshop is a full day seminar with some short introductory lectures given by Oliver von Ahsen and literature talks that should be prepared and presented by the students in teams of two.
Lecturer: Oliver von Ahsen (Global Drug Discovery - Bayer Pharma AG, Berlin)