Gudrun Aldrian Ph.D. organic chemistry

Course and current status

1995: graduated with a degree in Pharmaceutics, Karl-Franzens-Universität Graz, Autriche

1995 - 1998: Ph.D. in organic chemistry on the synthesis and vectorization of peptide nucleic acids, Karl-Franzens-Universität Graz, Autriche in collaboration with the CRBM (Centre de Recherche en Biochimie Macromoléculaire) CNRS Montpellier, France

1998 - 2001: Post-doctoral position in pharmacology, CBS (Centre de Biochimie Structurale) CNRS, Montpellier, France

2001 - 2015: research engineer CNRS, responsible of the peptides synthesis core facility at CRBM, Montpellier, France

Since 2015: research engineer Sys2Diag CNRS/Alcediag, responsible of the Spot synthesis core facility and team leader "Nanovector", Montpellier, France

Scientific summary

Proteins are present in every living cell and possess a variety of biochemical activities. Consequently, peptides have great interest to study the relationship between structure and activity. They are also of medical importance for the development of new diagnostics, analytical tools and drugs. For this purpose, we produce peptide libraries by SPOT synthesis allowing a rapid screening of protein-protein interaction sites. Furthermore, peptides can be used to develop peptide-based devices for the delivery of biologically active molecules. These so-called cell-penetrating peptides (CPPs) are one of the most promising strategies to promote cellular internalization. CPPs are short positively charged peptides (<30 residues) which are able to penetrate biological membranes and to transfer cargoes into cells. CPPs can be covalently linked to the cargo or used in a non-covalent strategy consisting in the formation of stable Peptide-Based Nanoparticles (PBN) with cargo. The flexible and controllable nature of PBN can serve as a basis for functionalization allowing specific targeting of certain organs/tissues. Moreover, peptides can be modified easily, e.g. to confer plasma stability and to increase bioavailability of the therapeutic molecule.

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