Molecular recognition technology for detection of protein target by molecular beacon

Shunqing Xu, Xiaokun Cai, Xianglin Tan, Bin Lu

Research output: Contribution to journalConference articlepeer-review


Until recently, molecular beacons were limited to detecting nucleic acid target. Here we present a new technology for detection of thrombin protein by aptamer-derived molecular beacon without any antibody. A aptamer anti-thrombin was used as a recognition molecule. To make aptamer molecular beacon, we constructed two DNA oligomers that derived from the aptamer to thrombin. To one of the DNA oligomers that forms a hairpin structure, the fluorophore and quencher were attached at the 5′- and 3′-ends, respectively. Specifically in the presence of Tat or its peptides, but not in the presence of other proteins, the two oligomers undergo a conformational change to form a duplex that leads to relieving of fluorophore from the quencher, and thus a significant enhancement of the fluorescence of fluorescein was observed. A novel strategy for exploiting aptamers in the analysis of thrombin (analyte) has been described. A similar strategy could be used to study other analytes such as proteins and small molecules.

Original languageEnglish (US)
Pages (from-to)123-125
Number of pages3
JournalProceedings of SPIE - The International Society for Optical Engineering
StatePublished - 2001
Externally publishedYes
EventInternational Conference on Sensor Technology (ISTC 2001) - Wuhan, China
Duration: Oct 10 2001Oct 12 2001

All Science Journal Classification (ASJC) codes

  • Electronic, Optical and Magnetic Materials
  • Condensed Matter Physics
  • Computer Science Applications
  • Applied Mathematics
  • Electrical and Electronic Engineering


  • Aptamer
  • Biosensor
  • Molecular beacon
  • Molecular recognition


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