Brown researchers develop new ligase for high-temperature bioengineering applications

Brown researchers develop new ligase ideal for high temperature bioengineering applications
Brown researchers develop new ligase ideal for high temperature bioengineering applications
Brown University researchers recently published the results of their work to develop a new ligase, which is an enzyme that helps fuse broken strands of DNA and RNA, that functions at high temperatures.
 
“The focus of our group has always been in the engineering of medical diagnostics and molecular therapies, particularly dealing with RNA,” Brown professor Anubhav Tripathi, the paper’s senior author, said. “In many recent studies, we engineered novel molecular assays and platforms to rapidly detect viral infections and the presence of viral mutations. While we design and build the microfluidic platforms and the assays in-house, we always relied on off-the-shelf reagents to power these assays. As our designs became more complex, we grew increasingly frustrated at the lack of specialized enzymes, such as ligases.”
 
The new ligase, called KOD1Rnl, was developed based on a microbe that lives near volcanic thermal vents. Researchers believe it will be useful for scientists working with RNA sequencing and detection, as well as in mutation detection and other bioengineering applications.
 
“This new ligase has all the properties we think are desirable for manipulating RNA,” Brown graduate student Lei Zhang, a lead author of the paper, which was published in RNA Biology, said. “We think this could be a useful tool to add to the biomedical engineering toolbox.”

Organizations in this story


Brown University 75 Waterman St Providence, RI - 02912

Get notified the next time we write about Brown University!