WIN Seminar - Professor Naoki Sugimoto "Stability and Function of Nucleic Acids with Non-canonical Structures"

Friday, July 29, 2016 11:00 am - 12:00 pm EDT (GMT -04:00)

The Waterloo Institute for Nanotechnology (WIN) presents a seminar by Professor Naoki Sugimoto, from Frontier Institute for Biomolecular Engineering Research (FIBER), Graduate School of Frontiers of Innovative Research in Science and Technology (FIRST) at Konan University, Kobe, Japan.

Stability and Function of Nucleic Acids with Non-canonical Structures


Guanine-rich sequences are able to form G-quadruplexes; this structure is composed of G-quartets stabilized by Hoogsteen base pairings. The stability of G-quadruplexes depends on metal ions present in solution, and molecular crowding agents like poly (ethylene glycol) stabilize these structures. Sequences capable of forming G-quadruplexes are found in telomeres and in promoter regions of known oncogenes. Thus, G-quadruplex formation may regulate expression of genes involved in cancer progression. It was recently suggested that G-quadruplex formation in the 5’ UTR of mRNAs potentially suppresses protein expression level by inhibiting scanning by the small ribosomal subunit, especially in the UTRs of oncogene mRNAs. In this lecture, I will show the importance of stability and function of the G-quadruplexes on the reaction of nucleic acids. The effect of non-canonical structures formed in the template DNA and mRNA on the transcription and translation will be also presented quantitatively to develop a preemptive medicine.