American Chemical Society
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High-Resolution Single-Molecule Recognition Imaging of the Molecular Details of Ricin–Aptamer Interaction

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journal contribution
posted on 2012-05-03, 00:00 authored by Bin Wang, Cunlan Guo, Mengmeng Zhang, Bosoon Park, Bingqian Xu
We studied the molecular details of DNA aptamer–ricin interactions. The toxic protein ricin molecules were immobilized on a Au(111) surface using a N-hydroxysuccinimide (NHS) ester to specifically react with lysine residues located on the ricin B chains. A single ricin molecule was visualized in situ using the AFM tip modified with an antiricin aptamer. Computer simulation was used to illustrate the protein and aptamer structures, the single-molecule ricin images on a Au(111) surface, and the binding conformations of ricin–aptamer and ricin–antibody complexes. The various ricin conformations on a Au(111) surface were caused by the different lysine residues reacting with the NHS ester. It was also observed that most of the binding sites for aptamer and antibody on the A chains of ricin molecules were not interfered by the immobilization reaction. The different locations of the ricin binding sites to aptamer and antibody were also distinguished by AFM recognition images and interpreted by simulations.