skip to content
Prof. Dr. Stephanie Kath-Schorr

Nucleic Acid Chemistry

The Kath-Schorr group develops artificial ribonucleic acids assembled from synthetic building blocks which exhibit a range of new functions ranging from detection of biologically active molecules to ribonucleic acids with catalytic activity.

The Kath-Schorr group contributes to the uncovering of regulatory mechanisms of non-coding RNAs with approaches from chemical biology and chemistry. Novel chemical tools are developed, which allow detection, investigation and control of RNA function in vitro and in living cells. One focus is to expand the available chemical toolbox for site-specific RNA labeling in order to modify large non-coding RNAs for biophysical and in cell investigations. For in vitro labeling of large RNA molecules, unnatural base pairs are employed to site-specifically incorporate functional groups such as strained alkenes for copper-free click chemistry or spin labels into RNA. This approach allows to synthesize long (~1000 nt) RNAs via enzymatic methods which bear reporter groups at specific positions.

The core competencies of the Kath-Schorr group are in the field of organic chemistry, especially nucleic acid chemistry. In addition to the work with nucleic acids, biochemical and microbiological working techniques are well established in the group.

For the UoC Forum Nanocarriers, the Kath-Schorr group develops novel bifunctional linker systems with selective cleavage site for the covalent attachment of nucleic acids to nanoparticles. Cellular uptake and release of nanoparticle-RNA conjugates bearing such cleavable linkers will be studied.

Relevant Publications