Volume 96 Issue 6 | p. 6 | News of The Week
Issue Date: February 5, 2018 | Web Date: February 1, 2018

Protein mirror images could generate long-lasting biologics

Peptides and proteins designed from D-protein helix database work longer in cells than natural biologic drugs
Department: Science & Technology
News Channels: Biological SCENE
Keywords: Drug discovery, chirality, Protein Data Bank (PDB), retro-inversion, mirror-image phage display

Peptide- and protein-based biologic drugs have a problem. Enzymes in the body called proteases break down the linkages between L-amino acids in natural peptides and proteins. As a result, biologics typically have short lifetimes in the body and need to be injected or infused instead of taken as pills.

Synthetic analogs of natural peptides and proteins consisting of D-amino acids are safe from proteases. But drugmakers can’t just change L-amino acids to D-amino acids because . . .

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