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Fuller, Amelia

Amelia Fuller

Santa Clara University

Talk Title

Aromatic Residue Placement Influences Helical Structure of Short Peptoid Oligomers in Aqueous Solutions

Presentation Time

Sunday, June 25, 2023, at 10:05 am - 10:25 am

Sequence-specific, monodisperse peptoids, N-substituted glycine oligomers, have found diverse utility in biological and materials applications. A foundational understanding of residues that promote peptoid structure by influencing cis-trans amide bond equilibria has emerged. Nonetheless, few studies of water-soluble peptoid structures are available. Access to short, water-soluble peptoids with well- defined three-dimensional structures will advance the functional repertoire of peptoids.

In this work, we will present our systematic study of the structures of water soluble 6-mer peptoids. These peptoids include both aromatic and polar, charged residues sequenced in a putative amphiphilic ordering. Residues include both aromatic and polar groups that exhibit an energetic preference for the cis-amide conformation and are thus expected to promote a helical peptoid structure. Structures of the synthesized peptoid oligomers have been studied by CD spectroscopy and NMR spectroscopy in a range of aqueous solution conditions to evaluate both sequence and environmental contributions to structural ordering.

We have observed that the positioning of the aromatic residues in the peptoid sequence has a pronounced influence on peptoid structure; when residues are at the N-terminal and fourth position in the sequence, the structural ordering is different than when these residues are placed at other i, i + 3 positions in the sequence. The effects of aromatic residue identity and the identity of polar residues on peptoid structures will also be compared and presented.

This work will build a foundation of understanding about peptoid sequence-structure relationships; we and others will build on this to design and study water-soluble peptoids with varied functions.

Research in the Fuller Lab aims to develop new methods for the synthesis and structural analysis of organic peptidomimetic-molecules for potential application as diagnostic agent, sensors, and therapeutics.

Members of the Fuller Lab

Student researchers in the Fuller Lab at Santa Clara University are all undergraduates. They work on projects carried out in Dr. Fuller's research laboratory and in introductory organic chemistry laboratory courses. Their work provides intensive training in modern synthesis methods and various spectroscopic analyses. Undergraduate researchers routinely present their research results at regional and national conferences and are co-authors on scientific publications.

Amelia Fuller
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