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    Saxitoxin (STX) is one of the potent marine biotoxins that has high rate of lethality. However, there are no effective treatments at present, and the existing detection methods need to be further explored because of ethical problems or technical limitations. In this work, oligonucleotide aptamers toward STX were screened based on immobilizing libraries on Immobilized Metal-Chelate (IMC), such as Ni-NTA Sepharose, and the IMC-SELEX was conducted by the G-quadruplex library and the random library, respectively. Aptamer 45e (from the G-quadruplex library) and aptamer 75a were obtained after optimization, and aptamer 45e turned out to have a higher affinity toward STX. Furthermore, it was found that the hydrogen bonding and the van der Waals forces (VDW) played major roles in the high efficiency and specificity between STX and 45e by means of molecular docking and dynamics simulation. Based on this, aptamer 45e-1 with the Kd value of 19 nM was obtained by further optimization, which was then used to construct a simple, label-free and real-time optical BLI aptasensor for the detection of STX. This aptasensor showed good reproducibility and stability. In summary, with the advantages of screening aptamers of high efficiency and specificity toward the targets, the proposed IMC-SELEX provides a promising screening strategy for discovering aptamers, which could be used as the potential molecular recognition elements in the fields of biomedicine, food safety and environmental monitoring.


    Rong Zhou, Yun Gao, Chengfang Yang, Xiaojuan Zhang, Bo Hu, Luming Zhao, Han Guo, Mingjuan Sun, Lianghua Wang, Binghua Jiao. A Novel SELEX Based on Immobilizing Libraries Enables Screening of Saxitoxin Aptamers for BLI Aptasensor Applications. Toxins. 2022 Mar 21;14(3)

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    PMID: 35324725

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