Laboratory of Bioorganic Chemistry and Chemical Biology
Center for Nanotechnology

The nucleic acid research group of Prof. Dr. F. Seela investigates the chemistry and biology of nucleic acids with a special focus on modified DNA. New purine and pyrimidine nucleobase analogues are developed, and glycosylation reactions with carbohydrate derivatives are studied. We investigate nucleobase recognition in duplex, triplex and tetraplex DNA. New building blocks for the Huisgen-Meldal-Sharpless cycloaddition are designed and employed in the “click” reaction for DNA conjugation, fluorogenic labelling or crosslinking. Our work includes applications in the field of nanobiotechnology, drug development, diagnostics, nanotechnology and synthetic biology.

Selected research topics are:

1. Click Chemistry

Click Chemistry

F. Seela, V. R. Sirivolu, P. Chittepu. The Modification of DNA with Octadiynyl Side Chains: Synthesis, Base Pairing and Formation of Fluorescent Coumarin Dye Conjugates of Four Nucleobases by the Alkyne–Azide “Click” Reaction. Bioconjugate Chem. 2008, 19, 211.

2. DNA Nanoparticles and Conjugates

DNA Nanoparticles and Conjugates
F. Seela, S. Budow, P. Leonard. Oligonucleotides Forming an i-Motif: The pH-Dependent Assembly of Individual Strands and Branched Structures Containing 2’-Deoxy-5-propynylcytidine. Org. Biomol. Chem. 2007, 5, 1858.

3. DNA Functionalization with Fluorescent Dyes or Other Reporter Groups

DNA Functionalization with Fluorescent Dyes or Other Reporter Groups
F. Seela, S. Ingale. “Double Click” Reaction on 7-Deazaguanine DNA: Synthesis and Excimer Fluorescence of Nucleosides and Oligonucleotides with Branched Side Chains Decorated with Proximal Pyrenes. J. Org. Chem. 2010, 75, 284.

4. Molecular Recognition in Duplex or Triplex-DNA

Molecular Recognition in Duplex or Triplex-DNA
F. Seela, S. Budow. Mismatch formation in solution and on DNA microarrays: how modified nucleosides can overcome shortcomings of imperfect hybridization caused by oligonucleotide composition and base pairing. Mol. BioSyst. 2008, 4, 232.

F. Seela, D. Jiang, S. Budow. Triplexes with 8-Aza-2’-deoxyisoguanosine Replacing Protonated dC: Probing Third Strand Stability with a Fluorescent Nucleobase Targeting Duplex DNA. ChemBioChem, 2010, in press.

5. DNA-Quadruplexes and Pentaplexes

DNA-Quadruplexes and Pentaplexes
D. Jiang and F. Seela. Oligonucleotide Duplexes and Multi-Strand Assemblies with 8-Aza-2’-deoxyisoguanosine: A Fluorescent isoGd Shape Mimic Expanding the Genetic Alphabet and Forming Ionophores. J. Am. Chem. Soc. 2010, 132, 4016.

F. Seela, R. Kröschel. Quadruplex and Pentaplex Self-Assemblies of Oligonucleotides Containing Short Runs of 8-Aza-7-deaza-2’-deoxyisoguanosine or 2’-Deoxyisoguanosine Bioconjugate Chem. 2001, 12, 1043.

6. DNA Sequencing

DNA Sequencing
S. Mizusawa, S. Nishimura, F. Seela. Improvement of the dideoxy chain termination method of DNA sequencing by use of deoxy-7-deazaguanosine triphosphate in place of dGTP. Nucleic Acids Res. 1986, 14, 1319.

F. Seela, E. Feiling, J. Gross, F. Hillenkamp, N. Ramzaeva, H. Rosemeyer, M. Zulauf. Fluorescent DNA: the development of 7-deazapurine nucleoside triphosphates applicable for sequencing at the single molecule level. J. Biotechnol. 2001, 86, 269.

7. Nucleosides with Antiviral or Anticancer Activity

Nucleosides with Antiviral or Anticancer Activity
F. Seela, X. Peng. Pyrrolo[2,3-d]pyrimidine β-L-Nucleosides Containing 7-Deazaadenine, 2-Amino-7-deazaadenine, 7-Deazaguanine, 7-Deazaisoguanine, and 7-Deazaxanthine. Collect. Czech. Chem. Commun. 2006, 71, 956.

Prof. Seela has published more the 500 scientific manuscripts in peer reviewed journals. He is Professor at the University of Osnabrück and member of the Center for Nanotechnology, Münster. For more information, please visit the home page .