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Start date: Apr 1, 2009, End date: Mar 31, 2011 PROJECT  FINISHED 

"The Huc group is a world leading research team in the fields of Biomimetic and Bioorganic Chemistry. One of group’s main contributions is focused on the synthesis, structural elucidation and biological application of aromatic oligoamides. These compounds adopt exceptionally stable folded conformations, helices, stabilised by intramolecular hydrogen bonds and - interactions. The high structural predictability, tunability, ease of synthesis and resistance to hydrolysis of such foldamers has led to an increasing attention towards those oligoamides. Very recently, Huc and co-workers have proven that despite the high hydrophobicity of those aromatic foldamers, they can be made highly hydrosoluble by inserting cationic side chains, providing important possibilities for their biological application as cell penetrating agents. This project focuses on the investigation of structural characteristics and the ability of aromatic oligoamides to cross the cellular membrane and deliver different cargoes efficiently. The qualitative and quantitative determination of uptake of the helices, intracellular trafficking and translocation of cargo will very importantly allow us to gain an insight into the kinetics and mechanism underlying the cellular translocation, areas that are currently being subject to a lot of controversy. The project is concerned with an emerging area of interdisciplinary chemical research in which the development of drug delivery technologies based on the new understanding of cross-membrane transport is expected to have a very strong impact on health and the design of novel therapeutic and diagnostic agents."
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