Special Issue "Programmable Proteins in Synthetic Biology"

A special issue of SynBio (ISSN 2674-0583).

Deadline for manuscript submissions: 31 May 2022 | Viewed by 325

Special Issue Editor

Dr. Masahito Yamagata
E-Mail Website
Guest Editor
Department of Molecular and Cellular Biology, Harvard University, Cambridge, MA 02138, USA
Interests: neural circuit formation; synapse formation; adhesion molecule; extracellular matrix; connectomics; synthetic biology; genome editing; cell atlas; visual system in birds and mice
Special Issues, Collections and Topics in MDPI journals

Special Issue Information

Dear Colleagues,

Programmable proteins to detect, visualize, modulate, or eliminate proteins of choice in vitro and in vivo are essential to study the targets recognized and the biology that follows. The specificities of programmable proteins can be easily altered by designing their sequences and structures. The flexibility and modularity of these proteins are currently pivotal for synthetic biology and various medical applications.

For example, Zinc-fnger nuecleases (ZFNs) and transcription activator-like effector nucleases (TALENs) were initially invented as programmable gene-editing tools.  Subsequently, RNA-guided CRISPR/Cas endonucleases and relevant base editors have been extensively used for different uses based on recognizing specific nucleic acid sequences. By fusing the CRISPR/Cas module to transcriptional regulators, CRISPRi and CRISPRa were developed to control gene expression. More recently, CRISPR-based diagnostic tools are devised for rapid detection of viral sequences such as SARS-CoV-2.

The second example is the immunoglobulin-derived programmable proteins that bind to other molecules.  Recombinant antibodies including nanobodies (VHH) and bispecific antibodies show the binding specificity required for specific recognition of molecules of interest. By fusing to other proteins, nanobodies can detect their binding partners in vitro and in vivo. Reminiscent of antibodies, artificial scaffolds such as FingR and DARPin are also promising candidates for constructing novel binders.

In this Special issue, authors are invited to publish original research articles and reviews on various aspects of such programmable proteins.

Dr. Masahito Yamagata
Guest Editor

Manuscript Submission Information

Manuscripts should be submitted online at www.mdpi.com by registering and logging in to this website. Once you are registered, click here to go to the submission form. Manuscripts can be submitted until the deadline. All submissions that pass pre-check are peer-reviewed. Accepted papers will be published continuously in the journal (as soon as accepted) and will be listed together on the special issue website. Research articles, review articles as well as short communications are invited. For planned papers, a title and short abstract (about 100 words) can be sent to the Editorial Office for announcement on this website.

Submitted manuscripts should not have been published previously, nor be under consideration for publication elsewhere (except conference proceedings papers). All manuscripts are thoroughly refereed through a single-blind peer-review process. A guide for authors and other relevant information for submission of manuscripts is available on the Instructions for Authors page. SynBio is an international peer-reviewed open access quarterly journal published by MDPI.

Please visit the Instructions for Authors page before submitting a manuscript. The Article Processing Charge (APC) for publication in this open access journal is 1000 CHF (Swiss Francs). Submitted papers should be well formatted and use good English. Authors may use MDPI's English editing service prior to publication or during author revisions.


  • Cas
  • genome editing
  • artificial endonuclease
  • synthetic transcription factor
  • nanobody
  • recombinant antibody
  • recombinant probe
  • protein-protein interaction
  • recombinant binder

Published Papers

This special issue is now open for submission.
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