Senior Honors Projects, 2010-2019

Creative Commons License

Creative Commons License
This work is licensed under a Creative Commons Attribution-Noncommercial-No Derivative Works 4.0 License.

Date of Graduation

Spring 2019

Document Type


Degree Name

Bachelor of Science (BS)


Department of Chemistry and Biochemistry


Debra L. Mohler


Antisense oligonucleotides (ASO) are single-stranded deoxyribonucleic acids that bind to mRNA to inhibit the synthesis of proteins that have been associated with the central mechanisms of disease development. Due to their gene silencing capabilities, the potential for ASOs as therapeutic agents is wide, but many toxicological challenges such as poor membrane permeability, low solubility, and rapid degradation by exonucleases must be overcome before ASO medications can be reliably utilized. In order to negate these challenges, the natural sugar- phosphate backbone of ASO’s, which is responsible for its rapid degradation, will be replaced by one that is hydrolytically stable. To do so, synthetic oligonucleotide analogues that lack the traditional ribose-phosphate backbone are being developed and will be studied to assess their stability and ability to suppress gene expression.



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