Computational selection of RNA aptamer against angiopoietin-2 and experimental evaluation

Wen Pin Hu, Jangam Vikram Kumar, Chun Jen Huang, Wen Yih Chen

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Angiogenesis plays a decisive role in the growth and spread of cancer and angiopoietin-2 (Ang2) is in the spotlight of studies for its unique role in modulating angiogenesis. The aim of this study was to introduce a computational simulation approach to screen aptamers with high binding ability for Ang2. We carried out computational simulations of aptamer-protein interactions by using ZDOCK and ZRANK functions in Discovery Studio 3.5 starting from the available information of aptamers generated through the systematic evolution of ligands by exponential enrichment (SELEX) in the literature. From the best of three aptamers on the basis of ZRANK scores, 189 sequences with two-point mutations were created and simulated with Ang2. Then, we used a surface plasmon resonance (SPR) biosensor to test 3 mutant sequences of high ZRANK scores along with a high and a low affinity binding sequence as reported in the literature. We found a selected RNA aptamer has a higher binding affinity and SPR response than a reported sequence with the highest affinity. This is the first study of in silico selection of aptamers against Ang2 by using the ZRANK scoring function, which should help to increase the efficiency of selecting aptamers with high target-binding ability.

Original languageEnglish
Article number658712
JournalBioMed Research International
StatePublished - 2015


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