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Interleukin-4 (IL-4) is a potentially interesting anti-inflammatory therapeutic, which is rapidly excreted. Therefore, serum half-life extension by polymer conjugation is desirable, which may be done by PEGylation. Here, we use PEtOx as an alternative to PEG for bioconjugate engineering. We genetically extended murine IL-4 (mIL-4) with the d-domain of insulin-like growth factor I (IGF-I), a previously identified substrate of transglutaminase (TG) Factor XIIIa (FXIIIa). Thereby, engineered mIL-4 (mIL-4-TG) became an educt for TG catalyzed C-terminal, site-directed conjugation. This was deployed to enzymatically couple an azide group containing peptide sequence to mIL-4, allowing C-terminal bioconjugation of polyethylene glycol or poly(2-ethyl-2-oxazoline). Both bioconjugates had wild-type potency and alternatively polarized macrophages.


Dorothee Haas, Niklas Hauptstein, Michael Dirauf, Marc D Driessen, Matthias Ruopp, Ulrich S Schubert, Tessa Lühmann, Lorenz Meinel. Chemo-Enzymatic PEGylation/POxylation of Murine Interleukin-4. Bioconjugate chemistry. 2022 Jan 19;33(1):97-104

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PMID: 34967625

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