Peptide-Catalysis in Asymmetric Organic Synthesis

Mehdi Mogharabi, Shahla Rezaei, Mohammad Ali Faramarzi

Trends in Peptide and Protein Sciences, Vol. 1 No. 3 (2017), , Page 88-98

Stereo-selectivity is an important feature in the development of the synthesis of biologically active organic compounds. In this process, (bio) catalysts exhibit substrate specificity that allows high levels of chemo- and regio-selectivity. Over the past decade, several peptides have been developed as effective bio-catalysts for a range of synthetically valuable reactions. In comparison with proteins owing a large number of amino acids and high molecular weights, peptide-catalysts possess only a few amino acid residues, which may adopt a secondary structure suitable for synthesis of desired chiral products. In addition, the flexible nature of peptides consents for tuning of reactivity and selectivity by replacing amino acid residues. These unique aspects provide attractive biocatalysts platform for asymmetric syntheses.


  • Asymmetric catalysis has an impressive progression in the manufacture of pharmaceuticals.
  • Enzymes and natural/synthetic peptides are attractive biocatalysts of the chiral reactions.
  • Peptides show unique features compared with other catalysts in asymmetric catalysis.


Molecular Imprinting of Peptides and Proteins

Fatemeh Ghorbani-Bidkorbeh

Trends in Peptide and Protein Sciences, Vol. 1 No. 3 (2017), , Page 99-108

Molecular imprinting described as a method utilized to create artificial receptors and antibodies by construction of selective recognition sites in a synthetic polymer can be a promising tool for generating peptide and protein artificial specific recognition sites. These materials, as potential antibody substitutes, have attracted great interest and attention in different fields such as peptide and protein purification and separation, chemical/electrochemical/optical sensors/biosensors, chromatographic stationary phases, and enzyme mimics. This review has focused on fundamentals of molecularly imprinted polymers in terms of selection of molecular template, functional monomer, cross linker, and polymerization format. Furthermore, several applications of peptide/protein-imprinted materials are highlighted and challenges regarding the intrinsic properties of peptide/ protein imprinting have been emphasized.


  • Highlights the fundamentals of peptides and proteins molecular imprinting.
  • Summarizes the essential elements and polymer formats of peptide/protein imprinted materials.
  • Highlights the applications of peptide/protein imprinting.
  • Highlights the challenges in peptide/protein imprinting.

Nanotechnology and Drug Delivery: Recent Applications and Future Challenges

Tahereh Tohidi Moghadam

Trends in Peptide and Protein Sciences, Vol. 1 No. 3 (2017), , Page 109-114

Today, nanotechnology has paved the way for developing a new generation of delivery systems for potential drugs, proteins, peptides, and genes of interest. This effort reviews a couple of recent reports on application of gold nanoparticles in protein/peptide delivery, with a glance at toxicological aspects of nanoparticles and potential challenges in the upcoming future.


  • Advances in nanotechnology have revolutionized fabrication and development of novel materials with diverse theranostic applications.
  • Gold nanoparticles (GNPs) have been nominated as promising candidates in delivery of protein and peptide drugs.
  • A deep understanding of biological responses to bare nanoparticles and their complex form is a prerequisite to produce low risk hybrid nanocarrier systems.

The Effect of ERK Signaling Pathway on the Level of Soluble RAGE (sRAGE) Peptide in AGE-Induced Oxidative Stress

Farnosh Shemirani, Razieh Yazdanparast, Safiyeh Aghazadeh

Trends in Peptide and Protein Sciences, Vol. 1 No. 3 (2017), , Page 115-122

In the context of diabetes, there is a bidirectional relation between AGEs and ROS which is amplified under hyperglycemic condition. Indeed, the AGE/RAGE interaction, via triggering several signaling pathways underlies such interplay. These damaging signaling cascades could be attenuated by naturally occurring soluble form of RAGE, namely sRAGE. In the present study, the effect of AGEs on the intracellular superoxide anion level and the antioxidant defense system was studied. Moreover, the link between the level of soluble RAGE and the AGE-triggered signaling pathways, namely ERK, was also investigated. Our results demonstrated that the elevation in intracellular superoxide anion level was associated with decrease in antioxidant enzyme activities. Our data also revealed that the level of sRAGE is negatively correlated with the ERK expression in a hyperglycemia model system. Hence, the current study brings about novel evidences suggesting that the level of sRAGE would be under the influence of stress-sensitive signaling pathways.


  • Prominent activity decrease of intracellular antioxidant enzymes was demonstrated upon AGE-treatment.
  •  An increase in superoxide anion level was demonstrated upon AGE-treatment.
  • The level of sRAGE is negatively associated with the ERK expression in AGE-treated cells.
  • The level of sRAGE was shown to significantly elevate in the presence of ERK inhibitor.

Investigating the Relation between miR-31 and RhoA Expressions in Breast Cancer Clinical Samples and Cell Lines: A Controversial Matter

Samira Mohammadi Yeganeh, Mohammadreza Malekian, Vahid Kia, Ameneh Koochaki, Mahdi Paryan

Trends in Peptide and Protein Sciences, Vol. 1 No. 3 (2017), , Page 123-129

Breast cancer is the most prevalent diagnosed cancer and the second cause of cancer death among women worldwide. There are different mechanisms that play crucial roles in the onset and progression of breast cancer including microRNAs. microRNAs are small noncoding RNAs that regulate gene expression by repressing translation post-transcriptionally. miR-31 is an integrin modulator implicated in different cellular processes such as apoptosis, cell cycle control, and DNA repair. According to the literature, RhoA is one of the genes regulated by miR-31. It has an important role in actin-myosin contraction and subsequently in cell motility and migration in metastasis cascade. Breast cancer cell lines, MCF-7 and MDA-MB-231, as well as normal breast cells, MCF-10A, were cultured. RNA extraction, cDNA synthesis, and SYBR Green I quantitative real-time PCR were used to investigate the expression of miR-31 and RhoA. In addition, 10 metastatic breast cancer clinical samples were analyzed to assess miR-31 and RhoA expression, and normal cells from the same patients were used as controls. Pearson’s correlation co-efficient was applied to find out any probable relation between miR-31 and RhoA expression. Gene expression analyses in MCF-7 cell line showed downregulation of miR-31 while RhoA was upregulated in the cell line (inverse correlation). miR-31 and RhoA were both upregulated in metastatic MDA-MB-231 cell line and downregulated in 90% of clinical samples. Pearson’s correlation co-efficient showed complete positive correlation between miR-31 and RhoA expression. The expression of miR-31 and RhoA is positively correlated, and it is declined in metastatic breast that cancer clinical samples save MDA-MB-231 cells. Unlike previous reports, we found that miR-31 is not the main silencer of RhoA expression. Therefore, more investigation on genes and miRNAs affecting metastasis process can elucidate new biomarkers and therapeutic targets for metastatic breast cancer.


  • miR-31 is an important miRNA implicated in different cellular processes as well as cancer.
  • The protein product of RhoA gene plays a role in actin-myosin contraction and cell motility in cancer metastasis.
  • We approved bioinformatically and experimentally that RhoA is one of the genes regulated by miR-31

Yeast Enriched with Selenium: A Promising Source of Selenomethionine and Seleno-Proteins

Hamed Zare, Hossein Vahidi, Parviz Owlia, Maryam Hosseindokht Khujin, Ali Khamisabadi

Trends in Peptide and Protein Sciences, Vol. 1 No. 3 (2017), , Page 130-134

Organic selenium compound such as selenomethionine plays a significant function in response to oxidative stress. Currently Saccharomyces cerevisiae is one of the best organisms that has ability to accumulate selenomethionine and selenium biotransformation. Addition of mineral selenium to medium culture is a very common practice in order to produce the selenomethionine and Seleno-proteins. Due to the toxicity of selenium for yeasts, selenium tolerant yeast isolation procedures are required. The aim of this investigation was to separate indigenous selenium tolerant S.cerevisiae strains which will not be affected by high selenium concentrations and are able to produce high levels of selenomethionine. In this study, 85 samples were collected from fermentative fruit. Screening was carried out in order to select high yeast cell density and also high selenomethionine accumulation. After confirming yeast strains, selected strains were cultured at a concentration of 25 mg/L sodium selenite and selenomethionine content was measured after 48 hours. The S18 isolate showed had maximum biomass production and selenomethionine accumulation (2655 ppm) and (3.73 g/L) compared to the other isolates.


  • Selenomethionine is an important amino acid that has a significant role against oxidative stress.
  • Addition of inorganic selenium to the yeast media culture leads to produce the selenomethionine.
  • Saccharomyces cerevisiae is one of the best organisms for selenium biotransformation.