Elizabethtown College Professor of Chemistry James A. MacKay, along with junior chemistry student John Talbott ’22 and biochemistry alumna Aubrey Maryniak ’19, recently co-authored the article, “Extended Peptide Nucleic Acid Nucleobases Based on Isoorotic Acid for the Recognition of A-U Base Pairs in Double-Stranded RNA,” published by Chemistry-A European Journal.

Article Abstract
Peptide nucleic acids (PNA) with extended isoorotamide containing nucleobases (Io) were designed for binding A–U base pairs in double‐stranded RNA. Isothermal titration calorimetry and UV thermal melting experiments revealed improved affinity for A–U using the Io scaffold in PNA. PNAs having four sequential Io extended nucleobases maintained high binding affinity.