April 9, 2010
Mimicking Biological Calcium Concentration Oscillations:
Napthopyran-based Photochromic Chelation
MARC U*STAR Scholar
Abstract: Creation of a photochromic molecule that can bind to divalent calcium cations when irradiated with a certain wavelength and then release them upon irradiation with a different wavelength would allow the simulation of biological calcium concentration oscillations. The photochromic compound could then be used for further study of the effect these oscillations have on cellular processes. Prior work resulted in a photochromic chelator that could bind and release calcium, but addition of more chelating groups to that molecule should increase the binding affinity to calcium to a level required for use in biological contexts. Models of the closed and open forms of the new photochromic target are being synthesized to develop synthetic and binding study methodology and to verify a stronger affinity prior to performing likewise for the functional chelator.