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Caged Nucleotides

Technology #95107

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Caged NucleotidescADPRCalcium Mobilization
Timothy Walseth, PhD
Professor, Department of Pharmacology, University of Minnesota
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Hon Cheung Lee, PhD
Department of Pharmacology, University of Minnesota
Managed By
Kevin Anderson
Technology Licensing Officer 612-624-8293
Patent Protection
US Patent 5,872,243

Caged Nucleotides Aids Study of Calcium Mobilization

Caged nucleotides can be a valuable tool in studying many biological processes including calcium ion mobilization. Caged nucleotides give the unique ability to release parent compounds into dynamic systems with more precise temporal and spatial resolution than what is possible using simple diffusion. A family of photolytically caged nucleotides, including cyclic nucleotides with calcium ion mobilizing agents and antagonists, has been developed. The compounds are useful for the photolytic generation of free nucleotides in aqueous samples, for example, in the study of calcium mobilization in cells and cell homogenates.

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Caged cADPR

The uncaging efficiency of the cyclic nucleotides has been found to be better than that of other caged compounds. Often Ca2+ leakage can occur during microinjection, causing the possibility of being mistaken as Ca2+ released by cyclic ADP ribose (cADPR). These new caged nucleotides may provide a possible alternative approach to introducing cyclic nucleotides into cells other than the current method of microinjection. With caged nucleotides, Ca2+ release occurs through induction by ultraviolet photolysis, thus eliminating possible injection artifact. The focused laser illumination allows for free nucleotides to be generated at specific locations within a single cell, either outside the cell or in a cell-free medium.


  • Uncaging efficiency of cADPR is better than other caged compounds
  • Caged cADPR eliminates possible injection artifact
  • Use of caged cADPR may provide alternative approaches for introducing cADPR into cells other than microinjection