Luminescence switch-on detection of protein tyrosine kinase-7 using a G-quadruplex-selective probe

Sheng Lin, Wei Gao, Zeru Tian, Chao Yang, Lihua Lu, Jean Louis Mergny*, Chung Hang Leung*, Edmond Dik Lung Ma*

*Corresponding author for this work

Research output: Contribution to journalJournal articlepeer-review

164 Citations (Scopus)
23 Downloads (Pure)


A series of luminescent iridium(iii) complexes were synthesised and evaluated for their ability to act as luminescent G-quadruplex-selective probes. The iridium(iii) complex 9 [Ir(pbi)2(5,5-dmbpy)]PF6 (where pbi = 2-phenyl-1H-benzo[d]imidazole; 5,5-dmbpy = 5,5′-dimethyl-2,2′-bipyridine) exhibited high luminescence for G-quadruplex DNA compared to dsDNA and ssDNA, and was employed to construct a G-quadruplex-based assay for protein tyrosine kinase-7 (PTK7) in aqueous solution. PTK7 is an important biomarker for a range of leukemias and solid tumors. In the presence of PTK7, the specific binding of the sgc8 aptamer sequence triggers a structural transition and releases the G-quadruplex-forming sequence. The formation of the nascent G-quadruplex structure is then detected by the G-quadruplex-selective iridium(iii) complex with an enhanced luminescent response. Moreover, the application of the assay for detecting PTK7 in cellular debris and membrane protein extract was demonstrated. To our knowledge, this is the first G-quadruplex-based assay for PTK7.

Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)4284-4290
Number of pages7
JournalChemical Science
Issue number7
Early online date18 May 2015
Publication statusPublished - 1 Jul 2015

Scopus Subject Areas

  • Chemistry(all)


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