According to the team, the technology can deliver active molecules to specific sections of proteins and hence, can help get rid of the tumours without harming the patient''s healthy cells.
The development of the Linchpin Directed Modification (LDM) platform has been described in three papers published in the Journal of the American Chemical Society, Angewandte Chemie and Chemical Science.
"Successful platforms for precision engineering of proteins depend on the core understanding of molecular and social behaviour of proteins in the chemical reactions.
"Protein modifications typically involve attaching specific chemicals to strategic sections of the proteins. Such protein modifications are commonly seen in nature, but the intricate machinery is challenging to replicate in the lab," said Vishal Rai, Associate Professor, Department of Chemistry, IISER Bhopal.
"The difficulty in attaching specific tags, markers, and therapeutic molecules to specific protein regions arises from the complexity of the protein structure and the non-specific nature of many of the modifiers," Raj added.
The LDM platform is empowered by reagents made of three key components. A key advantage of the LDM platform is that it does not modify the structure or functions of the native protein, he said.
The LDM reagents can precisely label biologically active molecules such as antibodies that can be delivered accurately at the designated cells. The research team has shown that the LDM molecule successfully delivers homogeneous conjugate of a monoclonal antibody and drug for selective inhibition of breast cancer cells.
"The LDM platform provides unprecedented control over precision in protein engineering and a very powerful chemical toolbox for biology and medicine. The platform will help cancer patients with precise imaging-guided tumour surgeries and directed cancer chemotherapeutics in the coming years. In other words, the technology would empower us to get rid of the tumours without harming the patient''s healthy cells," he added. PTI GJS SMN