Ongoing Projects

Ongoing projects


1003-ARDEB

Development of a Prototype Cell-based Influenza Vaccine Using Reverse Genetics and Synthetic Biology Methods

The aim of this project is to develop a reassortant influenza vaccine. This will be the first time a flu vaccine is developed in Turkey. Sentegen’s role in this project is to synthesize the plasmids and virus-coding genes.

The project is a collaborative effort between Medipol University, Tubitak Marmara Research Center, Istanbul University School of Medicine, Refik Saydam Hıfzıssıhha Institute of Preventive Medicine and the Turkish Institute of Public Health. The project was chosen by Tubitak as an examplary 1003 project.



1005-ARDEB

Developing Secondary Antibodies for Western Blot by the Bioconjugation of TGA-Capped CdTe Quantum Dots to Immunoglobulin G Antibodies

Western blotting is a protein analysis method which is frequently used in biology and molecular biology laboratories. In this method, proteins are visualized using chemiluminescence. Visualization with chemiluminescence is a time-consuming, troublesome and demanding technique.

In this project, a quantum dot (Q-Dot)-based western blot visualization method is established by developing Q-Dot-secondary antibody conjugates using Q-Dots, which are novel light-emitting materials, in order to make a commonly used molecular biology technique easier and more practical.

Q-Dots are nonacrystals that are composed of semiconductor atoms and behave as artificial atoms because of the quantum confinement effect. Q-Dots are highly popular in other visualization systems since they are stable and resistant to photobleaching. Because they can emit different colors depending on their size, the wavelength (color) of light emitted by Q-Dots can be finely tuned. In addition, they have high quantum yield, wide excitation spectra and narrow emission spectra, which are advanageous for materials to be used as a visualization tool.

Moreover, Q-Dots are valuable materials in biotechnology and bioengineering because they can be conjugated to biomolecules thanks to the functional groups decorated on their shells. They are commonly conjugated to proteins, specifically to antibodies.

The antibodies conjugated to Q-Dots are generally used in protein analyses in cells and tissues because Q-Dots are able to preserve their ability to emit light for long periods of time. However, in this project, Q-Dot-immunoglobulin G (IgG) antibodies, the main output of the project, are used as secondary antibodies mainly in western blotting.