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Interaction of ASOs with PC4 Is Highly Influenced by the Cellular Environment and ASO Chemistry

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posted on 2020-05-14, 17:19 authored by Timothy A. Vickers, Michael T Migawa, Punit P. Seth, Stanley T. Crooke
The activity of PS-ASOs is strongly influenced by association with both inter- and intracellular proteins. The sequence, chemical nature, and structure of the ASO can have profound influences on the interaction of PS-ASOs with specific proteins. A more thorough understanding of how these pharmacological agents interact with various proteins and how chemical modifications, sequence, and structure influence interactions with proteins is needed to inform future ASO design efforts. To better understand the chemistry of PS-ASO interactions, we have focused on human positive cofactor 4 (PC4). Although several studies have investigated the in vitro binding properties of PC4 with endogenous nucleic acids, little is known about the chemistry of interaction of PS-ASOs with this protein. Here we examine in detail the impact of ASO backbone chemistry, 2′-modifications, and buffer environment on the binding affinity of PC4. In addition, using site-directed mutagenesis, we identify those amino acids that are specifically required for ASO binding interactions, and by substitution of abasic nucleotides we identify the positions on the ASO that most strongly influence affinity for PC4. Finally, to confirm that the interactions observed in vitro are biologically relevant, we use a recently developed complementation reporter system to evaluate the kinetics and subcellular localization of the interaction of ASO and PC4 in live cells.