Protein Surface Mimicry by Peptidic Foldamers Foldamers are unnatural oligomers that display discrete and predictable folding behavior. The proposed research explores the ability of foldamers to mimic recognition surfaces on natural proteins and thereby block the formation of specific protein-protein complexes. Interactions between specific pairs of proteins are critical for regulation and information transfer in living systems. Pathological interactions contribute to many human diseases. Such interactions are often difficult to inhibit with small molecules (the traditionally preferred source for drugs) because large surface areas are buried when one macromolecule binds to another. A principal hypothesis behind our work is that foldamers could provide a basis for rational development of inhibitors of protein-protein interactions. We are testing this hypothesis in three systems. First, we are trying to mimic alpha-helical Bcl-2 homology-3 (BH3) domains, segments of natural pro-apoptotic proteins that are recognized by complementary clefts on anti- apoptotic partner proteins. This system represents an excellent testbed for our efforts because robust protein-based assays are available, and there is a good prospect of acquiring thermodynamic data and high-resolution structural data. Strategies that are successful for BH3 domain mimicry will be examined in the context of a longer alpha-helical target, the C-terminal heptad repeat (CHR) segment of the HIV protein gp41. The CHR helix must dock into a complementary cleft formed by another portion of gp41 in order for the virus to infect target cells. Blocking this interaction can block infection. The final test of our hypothesis focuses on inhibiting interactions between vascular endothelial growth factor (VEGF), a soluble signaling protein, and its cell-surface receptors. VEGF induces development of new blood vessels ("angiogenesis"), and aberrant VEGF-induced angiogenesis is associated with a number of human diseases. Strategies identified in this component of our research could ultimately enable us to develop foldamer antagonists for a wide range of protein-receptor interactions that occur at the cell surface.

Public Health Relevance

Interactions between specific proteins are critical for normal human physiology, and aberrant interactions underlie many diseases. The major goal of our research is to explore new strategies for blocking aberrant protein-protein interactions. Our experiments are very basic, but the results might provide a foundation for new therapeutic strategies. The agents with which we try to interfere with protein-protein interactions are oligomers that fold into well-defined shapes (foldamers).

Agency
National Institute of Health (NIH)
Institute
National Institute of General Medical Sciences (NIGMS)
Type
Research Project (R01)
Project #
5R01GM056414-15
Application #
8233526
Study Section
Synthetic and Biological Chemistry B Study Section (SBCB)
Program Officer
Smith, Ward
Project Start
1997-09-01
Project End
2014-02-28
Budget Start
2012-03-01
Budget End
2014-02-28
Support Year
15
Fiscal Year
2012
Total Cost
$278,921
Indirect Cost
$82,901
Name
University of Wisconsin Madison
Department
Chemistry
Type
Schools of Arts and Sciences
DUNS #
161202122
City
Madison
State
WI
Country
United States
Zip Code
53715
Hager, Marlies V; Johnson, Lisa M; Wootten, Denise et al. (2016) β-Arrestin-Biased Agonists of the GLP-1 Receptor from β-Amino Acid Residue Incorporation into GLP-1 Analogues. J Am Chem Soc 138:14970-14979
Checco, James W; Gellman, Samuel H (2016) Targeting recognition surfaces on natural proteins with peptidic foldamers. Curr Opin Struct Biol 39:96-105
Cheloha, Ross W; Watanabe, Tomoyuki; Dean, Thomas et al. (2016) Backbone Modification of a Parathyroid Hormone Receptor-1 Antagonist/Inverse Agonist. ACS Chem Biol 11:2752-2762
Checco, James W; Gellman, Samuel H (2016) Iterative non-proteinogenic residue incorporation yields α/β-peptides with a helix-loop-helix tertiary structure and high affinity for VEGF. Chembiochem :
Cheloha, Ross W; Sullivan, Jeremy A; Wang, Tong et al. (2015) Consequences of periodic α-to-β(3) residue replacement for immunological recognition of peptide epitopes. ACS Chem Biol 10:844-54
Checco, James W; Lee, Erinna F; Evangelista, Marco et al. (2015) α/β-Peptide Foldamers Targeting Intracellular Protein-Protein Interactions with Activity in Living Cells. J Am Chem Soc 137:11365-75
Checco, James W; Kreitler, Dale F; Thomas, Nicole C et al. (2015) Targeting diverse protein-protein interaction interfaces with α/β-peptides derived from the Z-domain scaffold. Proc Natl Acad Sci U S A 112:4552-7
Cheloha, Ross W; Gellman, Samuel H; Vilardaga, Jean-Pierre et al. (2015) PTH receptor-1 signalling-mechanistic insights and therapeutic prospects. Nat Rev Endocrinol 11:712-24
Peterson-Kaufman, Kimberly J; Haase, Holly S; Boersma, Melissa D et al. (2015) Residue-Based Preorganization of BH3-Derived α/β-Peptides: Modulating Affinity, Selectivity and Proteolytic Susceptibility in α-Helix Mimics. ACS Chem Biol 10:1667-75
Cheloha, Ross W; Maeda, Akira; Dean, Thomas et al. (2014) Backbone modification of a polypeptide drug alters duration of action in vivo. Nat Biotechnol 32:653-5

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