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Photoactivatable molecular probes to study RNA-protein interactions


   Institute of Chemical Biology

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  Prof R Vilar, Dr M Di Antonio, Prof E Tate  Applications accepted all year round  Funded PhD Project (Students Worldwide)

About the Project

This project is co-sponsored by the Institute of Chemical Biology EPSRC Centre for Doctoral Training and Vertex Pharm. Ltd. Oxford. 

Due to their rich structural diversity and broad range of biological functions, targeting RNA with small molecules is becoming an important strategy in drug discovery. Most cellular functions of RNA are controlled by proteins and dysregulation of these interactions can lead to a range of human diseases. Therefore, there is an increasing interest in efficient methods to identify proteins that bind to specific RNA structures. This project aims to develop a new class of molecular probe (based on small organic and/or metal-organic molecules) for the selective photolabeling of RNA-binding proteins. The new probes developed in this project will be applied to study repeat expansions in RNA structures, several of which are responsible for various neurological and neuromuscular diseases.

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