Interfering Peptides Targeting Protein-Protein Interactions
About the Speaker
Katja M. Arndt is Professor of Molecular Biotechnology at the University of Potsdam. She received her Ph.D. in Biochemistry under the supervision of Professor Andreas Plückthun, University of Zurich, Switzerland, and Professor Tom Alber, University of California, Berkeley. With the acceptance to the Emmy-Noether Excellence program of the German Research Foundation (DFG) in 2003, Katja M. Arndt became head of the group 'Protein Engineering in Biosystems' in the Department of Biology, University of Freiburg, Germany. In 2008, she became a principle investigator in the excellence cluster 'BIOSS' (biological signaling studies) and was appointed as Junior Fellow in the School of Life Sciences (LIFENET) of the Freiburg Institute for Advanced Studies (FRIAS). She was appointed to the faculty of the University of Potsdam as a Full Professor of Molecular Biotechnology in 2010. Her academic achievements have been recognized by many awards and scholarships. Her work focuses on evolutionary protein engineering utilizing different selection systems. She pioneered the field of interfering peptides for disrupting protein-protein interactions. Recently she was involved in tailoring a viral system for cytoplasmic gene delivery to tumor cells.Abstract
Protein-protein interaction surfaces are attractive yet challenging targets for disease intervention. We present strategies to combine rational design with in-vivo and in-vitro selection systems and implementing competitive and negative design aspects to simultaneously select for affinity and specificity. Using such a semi-rational evolutionary approach, we generated interfering peptides (iPEP) specifically directed against the coiled-coil interaction motif as found in transcription factors such as Jun, Fos, AF10 and MITF. Modifications such as photo-switchable iPEPs for external control of inhibitor activity and D-peptides for protease resistance will be discussed as well. Specific targeting of tumor cells and efficient cellular delivery has been implemented by a modular virus system based on the adeno-associated virus.