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A T7 exonuclease assisted dual-cycle signal amplification assay of miRNA using nanospheres-enhanced fluorescence polarization

Li, Xiaoting, Huang, Nian, Zhang, Liangliang, Zhao, Jingjin, Zhao, Shulin
Talanta 2019 v.202 pp. 297-302
DNA fragmentation, biomedical research, biotin, enzymes, fluorescence, fluorescent dyes, microRNA, nanospheres, neoplasms, nucleic acid hybridization, streptavidin
Based on streptavidin coated nanospheres and T7 exonuclease assisted dual-cycle signal amplification, we developed a novel sensitive fluorescence polarization detection method for miRNA. When target miRNA was present in the system, hairpin probe hybridized with miRNA, forming a double-stranded structure. The 5′ end of hairpin probe was then recognized and digested by T7 exonuclease, releasing the non-degraded single strand DNA fragments and miRNA. The released target miRNA could trigger the next cycle of hybridization and digestion, releasing more non-degraded fragments from hairpin probe. The fragments could hybridize with a signal probe (with carboxyfluorescein modification at 5′-end and biotin modification at 3′-end). The formed blunt 5′-end of signal probe was then recognized and degraded by T7 exonuclease, releasing the fragments and the fluorophore carboxyfluorescein. The next cycle of hybridization and digestion of signal probe was triggered by the released fragment at the same time. The free carboxyfluorescein cannot connect with streptavidin coated nanospheres which were used as the fluorescence polarization signal amplifier. So, there was a big change of fluorescence polarization signal after adding miRNA into the detection system, due to the different fluorescence polarization signal between nanospheres-captured intact signal probe and free carboxyfluorescein. The detection limit of this method is about 0.001 nM, and it has a good selectivity. In addition, it was also applicable to determine target miRNA in total miRNA extracts and compare the expression level of target miRNA in different cells. Consequently, the proposed method is expected to be used for the potential cancer diagnosis and the related biomedical research.