Welcome to the Biotage Peptide Synthesis Blogs.

      Has my peptide undergone an aspartimide rearrangement?

      Jul 7, 2020 2:12:56 PM / by Elizabeth Denton posted in Chromatography Fundamentals, Synthesis

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      Side reactions.  Words that cause a little shiver to run down every peptide chemists’ spine.  As peptide chemists, we worry about both chemical side reactions like diketopiperazine or aspartimide rearrangements, and secondary structure formation as causes for failed peptide syntheses.  But how do you know what to look for?  What is a susceptible sequence and how can you confirm if one of these structural rearrangements has occurred?

      In today’s post, I’ll discuss a couple strategies that have been published that illustrate how to identify if an aspartimide rearrangement has in fact occurred during your peptide synthesis.

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      Disulfide Rich Peptides - which order should the disulfide bonds be formed?

      Apr 15, 2020 2:38:56 PM / by Elizabeth Denton posted in Peptides, Troubleshooting and Optimization, Synthesis, Alstra

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      Disulfide rich peptides are being identified in species of both plants and animals at increasing rates. As new molecules are discovered and disulfide bonding patterns characterized, the need for simplified chemical synthesis strategies is also increasing.

      I have previously written about optimizing removal of several orthogonal side chain protecting groups including allyl, alloc, ivDde and acetamidomethyl (Acm) groups. The question that I’ll address today, though, is does the order in which the disulfide bonds are formed matter for cleaning up reactions to produce chemically synthesized disulfide rich peptides?

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      Preventing Aspartimide Rearrangements During Fmoc-based Solid Phase Peptide Synthesis

      Apr 9, 2020 1:15:00 PM / by Elizabeth Denton posted in Peptides, Troubleshooting and Optimization, Synthesis

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      Aspartimide rearrangements are a particularly nasty side reaction that can occur during fmoc-based solid phase peptide synthesis.  Not only is this a mass-neutral side reaction, chromatographically resolving the undesired, rearranged product can be particularly difficult.  To make matters worse, this side reaction can occur at any point during the synthesis after the Asp has been incorporated into the peptide.

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      Using microwave heating for your stapled peptide synthesis

      Jan 24, 2020 10:27:08 PM / by Elizabeth Denton posted in Peptides, Synthesis, Alstra

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      Hydrocarbon stapling as a strategy to stabilize secondary structures of peptides, while introduced by Miller, Blackwell and Grubbs in the mid 1990s, really grew to the forefront with seminal work by Schaffmeister and Verdine in early 2000s.  Protocols have been developed that enable this post-synthesis modification while the peptide is still on resin, but often these metathesis reactions are performed manually, and at room temperature.

      In today's post, I'll compare several different sets of reaction conditions using microwave heating with the goal of expediting the olefin metathesis reaction, without compromising reaction efficiency, and towards automating the entire synthesis.

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      Optimizing the removal of an ACM protecting group

      Nov 14, 2019 3:40:28 PM / by Elizabeth Denton posted in Peptides, Troubleshooting and Optimization, Synthesis, Alstra

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      Disulfide rich peptides have gained significant attention recently due to their incredible biological stability and tolerance to epitope grafting.  This class of peptides is often folded in solution, assuming the desired disulfide bond pattern correlates with the most thermodynamically stable structure.  Sometimes though, especially for chemically synthesized cysteine rich peptides, this is not the case.  The result is a complex mixture of peptides with varying disulfide bonding patterns and identical mass.

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      How do I choose my resin for peptide synthesis? {Part 2}

      Nov 8, 2019 4:23:13 PM / by Elizabeth Denton posted in Peptides, Synthesis, Media and Resin

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      Resins for solid phase peptide synthesis can vary significantly in both functionalization and composition, leading to mixed results at the end of a synthesis.  Previously, I demonstrated how the resin loading level affects the success or failure of your peptide synthesis.

      In today’s post, I’ll highlight how both the hydrophilicity and swelling capacity of your resin can influence your peptide synthesis.

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      How do I choose my resin for peptide synthesis? {Part 1}

      Nov 8, 2019 4:13:33 PM / by Elizabeth Denton posted in Peptides, Synthesis, Media and Resin, Alstra

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      It used to be easy with only polystyrene based resin types, but nowadays there is a broad choice of types to choose from, including everything from the C-terminal functionality (Rink vs Wang) to the polymer from which the resin itself is synthesized.

      All resins have one thing in common, and that’s the reactive site loading level. In this post, I will share my experiences with how this important factor impacts the success of peptide synthesis.

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      Five Tips and Tricks for Success in Solid Phase Peptide Synthesis

      Sep 27, 2019 3:26:17 PM / by Elizabeth Denton posted in Peptides, Troubleshooting and Optimization, Synthesis, Alstra

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      In my role as a peptide application scientist, I have had the pleasure of working with many groups that are venturing into the world of peptides for the first time.  Although it seems rather  straightforward to experienced synthetic chemists, producing acceptable yield and purity certainly comes with unique challenges in solid phase peptide synthesis .

      In this post I would like to present some of the tips and tricks that I have picked up along the way.

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      What is solid phase peptide synthesis?

      Sep 25, 2019 9:47:21 PM / by Elizabeth Denton posted in Peptides, Synthesis, Workflow, Media and Resin, Pillar Page

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      More and more groups are exploring the utility of peptides with an ever widening variety of applications. And although peptides are getting cheaper to purchase outright, many groups are continuing to bring peptide synthesis in house. As more groups join the peptide community, I frequently encounter questions about the basics of peptide synthesis.

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      Peptides containing cysteine: the role of scavengers in cleavage cocktail

      Sep 11, 2019 10:48:03 PM / by Elizabeth Denton posted in Peptides, Synthesis, Alstra

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      Since the development of Fmoc-based solid phase peptide synthesis, a wide variety of cleavage cocktails have emerged.  Each cleavage cocktail contains a unique combination of scavengers designed to prevent either side reactions mediated by the released protecting groups or the side chains themselves, or both during the peptide cleavage reaction.  As the number of scientists performing peptide synthesis grows, the question “which cleavage cocktail should I use?” comes up more often than not.

      In today’s post, I’ll highlight the role of of scavengers for peptides containing cysteine residues.

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      Post synthesis workup: What steps are necessary and what aren't?

      Jun 19, 2019 5:35:32 PM / by Elizabeth Denton posted in Peptides, Troubleshooting and Optimization, Synthesis, Workflow, V-10

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      You’ve just finished a peptide synthesis and now it’s time to cleave the peptide from the resin. You’ve selected a specific cleavage cocktail, performed the reaction and now what? The vast majority of peptide chemists will precipitate their peptide using an ether solution, lyophilize, and move on to purification. But is that the only option?

      In today’s post I’ll highlight an alternative strategy that saves both processing time, potentially dangerous reagents, all without compromising the integrity of the recently synthesized peptide.

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      Room temperature allyl ester and alloc deprotections - what is the lifetime of palladium?

      Jun 11, 2019 8:30:33 PM / by Elizabeth Denton posted in Peptides, Synthesis, Alstra

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      In a previous post, I did some work evaluating the efficiency of alloc removal with tetrakis palladium using microwave assistance and atmospheric conditions, which worked beautifully.  Given the known sensitivity of palladium catalysts (see Derek Lowe's post for a humorous dialogue), I sought to further explore the sensitivity of palladium towards the alloc removal in the context of a peptide.

      In this post, I'll explore a variety of atmospheric, room temperature alloc deprotection conditions aimed at evaluating the catalytic lifetime of palladium tetrakis for effective alloc removal. 

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      How to choose the right resin functionality for solid phase peptide synthesis

      Jun 11, 2019 8:30:01 PM / by Elizabeth Denton posted in Peptides, Synthesis, Media and Resin

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      As a chemist new to the peptide community, there are many choices that have to be made.  Which coupling reagents to use? Heat or no heat to promote chemistry? And most importantly, which resin?  I have talked previously about resin choices, from loading levels to swelling capacity and how they affect the synthesis outcome.  But I haven't addressed yet a fundamental feature of commercially available resins, and that's the functional handle to which the peptide chain is conjugated.

      In today's post, I'll describe some, and I mean only some, of the most commonly used chemical functionalities for Fmoc-based solid phase peptide synthesis and some scenarios in which you would choose one resin type over another.

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      Using microwave heating to expedite your allyl ester or alloc deprotection

      Jun 11, 2019 8:28:51 PM / by Elizabeth Denton posted in Peptides, Troubleshooting and Optimization, Synthesis, Alstra

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      Orthogonal amino acid protecting groups effectively expand the chemical tool kit available to peptide chemists allowing for synthesis of much more complex molecules.  Often times, orthogonal protecting groups are used in Fmoc-based chemistry to facilitate post-synthesis modifications of peptides, like the addition of small molecule fluorophores and more commonly now, peptide cyclization efforts.

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      Using double coupling to improve your peptide synthesis

      Apr 29, 2019 6:06:48 PM / by Elizabeth Denton posted in Peptides, Troubleshooting and Optimization, Synthesis, Alstra

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      There are several strategies employed when a peptide synthesis requires optimization.  Typically, the first thing considered is whether or not to double couple specific amino acids within the sequence.  This is somewhat of a change in mentality from traditional room temperature synthesis strategies where double coupling is frequently used for the entire peptide sequence.

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      Optimizing the removal of an ivDde protecting group

      Apr 29, 2019 6:05:57 PM / by Elizabeth Denton posted in Peptides, Troubleshooting and Optimization, Synthesis

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      As the complexity of peptides continues to grow, so does the use of amino acids with side chain protecting groups that can be selectively removed, leaving the peptide on resin and the remaining side chain protecting groups intact.  While there are  protocols to be found in the literature, they may not work to the highest level of efficiency every single time.  This can lead to disasterous results for any subsequent chemistry.

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