Faculty Articles

Selection of Single-Stranded DNA Molecular Recognition Elements against Exotoxin A Using a Novel Decoy-SELEX Method and Sensitive Detection of Exotoxin A in Human Serum

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Biomed Res Int



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Exotoxin A is one of the virulence factors of Pseudomonas aeruginosa, a bacterium that can cause infections resulting in adverse health outcomes and increased burden to health care systems. Current methods of diagnosing P. aeruginosa infections are time consuming and can require significant preparation of patient samples. This study utilized a novel variation of the Systematic Evolution of Ligand by Exponential Enrichment, Decoy-SELEX, to identify an Exotoxin A specific single-stranded DNA (ssDNA) molecular recognition element (MRE). Its emphasis is on increasing stringency in directing binding toward free target of interest and at the same time decreasing binding toward negative targets. A ssDNA MRE with specificity and affinity was identified after fourteen rounds of Decoy-SELEX. Utilizing surface plasmon resonance measurements, the determined equilibrium dissociation constant (Kd ) of the MRE is between 4.2 µM and 4.5 µM, and is highly selective for Exotoxin A over negative targets. A ssDNA MRE modified sandwich enzyme-linked immunosorbent assay (ELISA) has been developed and achieved sensitive detection of Exotoxin A at nanomolar concentrations in human serum. This study has demonstrated the proof-of-principle of using a ssDNA MRE as a clinical diagnostic tool.


Medicine and Health Sciences | Pharmacy and Pharmaceutical Sciences


Biomarkers, Blood Chemical Analysis, DNA, Single-Stranded, Exotoxins, Humans, Reproducibility of Results, SELEX Aptamer Technique, Sensitivity and Specificity

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