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Open AccessArticle

Nucleobase–Guanidiniocarbonyl-Pyrrole Conjugates as Novel Fluorimetric Sensors for Single Stranded RNA

Division of Organic Chemistry and Biochemistry, Ruđer Bošković Institute, Bijenička cesta 54, 10000 Zagreb, Croatia
Institute for Organic Chemistry, University of Duisburg-Essen, Universitätsstrasse 7, 45141 Essen, Germany
Author to whom correspondence should be addressed.
Molecules 2017, 22(12), 2213;
Received: 1 November 2017 / Revised: 4 December 2017 / Accepted: 9 December 2017 / Published: 13 December 2017
(This article belongs to the Collection Heterocyclic Compounds)
We demonstrate here for the first time that a guanidiniocarbonyl-pyrrole (GCP) unit can be applied for the fine recognition of single stranded RNA sequences—an intuitively unexpected result since so far binding of the GCP unit to ds-DNA or ds-RNA relied strongly on minor or major groove interactions, as shown in previous work. Two novel nucleobase–GCP isosteric conjugates differing in the flexibility of GCP unit revealed a fluorimetric recognition of various single stranded RNA, which could be additionally regulated by pH. The more rigid conjugate showed a specific fluorescence increase for poly A only at pH 7, whereby this response could be reversibly switched-off at pH 5. The more flexible derivative revealed selective fluorescence quenching by poly G at pH 7 but no change for poly A, whereas its recognition of poly AH+ can be switched-on at pH 5. The computational analysis confirmed the important role of the GCP fragment and its protonation states in the sensing of polynucleotides and revealed that it is affected by the intrinsic dynamical features of conjugates themselves. Both conjugates showed a negligible response to uracil and cytosine ss-RNA as well as ds-RNA at pH 7, and only weak interactions with ds-DNA. Thus, nucleobase–GCP conjugates can be considered as novel lead compounds for the design of ss-RNA or ss-DNA selective fluorimetric probes. View Full-Text
Keywords: pyrrolocytosine; guanidiniocarbonyl-pyrrole; DNA/RNA binding; fluorimetric recognition pyrrolocytosine; guanidiniocarbonyl-pyrrole; DNA/RNA binding; fluorimetric recognition
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MDPI and ACS Style

Ban, Ž.; Žinić, B.; Vianello, R.; Schmuck, C.; Piantanida, I. Nucleobase–Guanidiniocarbonyl-Pyrrole Conjugates as Novel Fluorimetric Sensors for Single Stranded RNA. Molecules 2017, 22, 2213.

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