Rainbow Dyes

Rainbow Dyes

Author: Anne Deveson

Small fluorescent ligands are essential for visualizing protein aggregates, which are common pathological hallmarks of many neurodegenerative diseases such as Alzheimer’s and Parkinson’s disease. K. Peter R. Nilsson, Linköping University, Sweden, and colleagues have succeed in synthesizing a series of anionic pentameric oligothiophene derivatives and evaluated them as fluorescent sensors for such aggregates.

Analysis showed that, from a biological perspective, three common pathological hallmarks associated with neurodegenerative diseases, that is, Aβ core plaques, cerebral β-amyloid angiopathy, and tau neurofibrillary tangles, could easily be identified in brain tissue sections due to bright fluorescence as well as distinct spectral signatures resulting from the binding of the ligands. The team hopes that these thiophene-based compounds will expand the tool box of fluorescent sensors for identifying a variety of disease-associated protein aggregates.


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