Selection of Aptamer Against Myelin Basic Protein for the Promotion of Remyelination

Selection of Aptamer Against Myelin Basic Protein for the Promotion of Remyelination
Evan Roberts
Myelin basic protein (MPB) is a protein found in the central nervous system (CNS) of many species. MBP is responsible for the adhesion of cytosolic surfaces of multilayered compact myelin in the CNS and is essential for the formation of CNS myelin. The demyelinating disease multiple sclerosis (MS) occurs when an immune response is caused due to presence of myelin (J.M. Boggs, 2006). There is absence of treatment that prevents progression or induces repair to the myelin in the human body (Nastasijevic, 2012).
Recently it has been shown that a single stranded DNA aptamer 40-nucleotides long selected for affinity to murine myelin shows the property of remyelination (Smestad, 2013). Because this aptamer binds to many mice components of myelin such as MBP, it is reasonable to believe that an aptamer selected against bovine MBP could have the same properties and may also bind with human MBP. This aptamer selected for MBP could provide a base for the creation of a therapeutic for humans with MS.
Specific Aim 1: Selection of RNA aptamer against MBP.
An aptamer selected against mice MBP recently promoted remyelination in a study done with mice. The myelin-specific aptamer induced remyelination in 35% of the experimental CNS lesions, compared to 4% and 9% remyelination that took place in the negative control mice treated with other aptamers (Nastasijevic, 2012). This study provides evidence that an aptamer selected against MBP can provide regeneration of myelin sheath, thus potentially providing an effective therapeutic for MS patients around the world.

Figure 1. MS causes the immune system to destroy Myelin in the CNS. Specific aim one is part of finding a component that may be vital to induce proper regrowth of Myelin in patients with MS. 

The target MBP can be ordered at a reasonable price from United States Biological, telephone number (800)-520-3011. Their website is The catalog number is M9758-10 and it cost $327.00 for 1 mg of MBP. If 400 pmol of MBP is used per round of selection, the cost per round will be $2.42. 
Boggs, J. M. (2006). Myelin basic protein: a multifunctional protein. Cell. Mol. Life Sci., 63, 1945-1961.
Nastasijevic B, Wright BR, Smestad J, Warrington AE, Rodriguez M, et al. (2012) Remyelination Induced by a DNA Aptamer in a Mouse Model of MultipleSclerosis. PLoS ONE 7(6): e39595. doi:10.1371/journal.pone.0039595
Smestad, J., & Maher, J. L., III. (2013). Ion-dependent conformational switching by a DNA aptamer that induces remyelination in a mouse model of multiple sclerosis. Nucleic Acids Research, 41(2), 1329-1342.
Here is a link to my progress report number 1: 
Here is a link to my progress report number 2:
Here is a link to my final report:

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