Synthesis and conformational studies of poly(L-lysine) based branched polypeptides with Ser and Glu/Leu in the side chains

Gábor Mezö, Judit Reményi, Judit Kajtár, Krisztina Barna, Dezsö Gaál, Ferenc Hudecz

Research output: Contribution to journalArticle

21 Citations (Scopus)


In a new group of polypeptides, the branches were composed of DL-Ala oligopeptide, L-serine and L-leucine or L-glutamic acid residues. The synthesis of eight different side-chain combinations is described. In the first group, Ser was attached directly to the ε-amino groups of polylysine, and Leu or Glu was situated at the side chain end (poly[Lys(X(i)-DL-Ala(m)- Ser(j))]). Alternatively, Leu or Glu was positioned next to the polylysine backbone (poly[Lys(Ser(j)-DL-Ala(m)-X(i))], where X=L-Leu or L-Glu and m~3- 6, i≤1 and j≤1). The second group of polymers was synthesised by grafting oligo(DL-alanine) chains to the ε-amino groups of polylysine, followed by coupling of Ser and Leu or Glu consecutively to the chain ends, however, in a different order, resulting in the polymers (poly[Lys(X(i)-Ser(j)-DL-Ala(m))] and poly[Lys(Ser(j)-X(i)-DL-Ala(m))], where X=L-Leu or L-Glu and m~3-6, i≤1 and j≤1). The effect of amino-acid composition and sequence of side chains in branched polypeptides on solution conformation was studied by CD spectroscopy. CD spectra recorded in aqueous solutions of various pH (2-11) and ionic strengths (0.02-2.0 M NaCl) suggest that leucine- and serine- containing polypeptides have more ordered (α-helical) structure than the polymers with glutamic acid and serine residues in the same position. The influence of serine residues on ordered structure (helical or β-sheet) formation depends on its position in the side chain as well as on the nature of amino acid X (Leu or Glu). The incorporation of Ser into the branches resulted in polypeptides possessing prolonged shelf stability and high water- solubility. No toxic effect of this new class of polymers was observed on mouse spleen cells, even after 4 h of incubation.

Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)81-95
Number of pages15
JournalJournal of Controlled Release
Issue number1-2
Publication statusPublished - Jan 3 2000


  • CD studies
  • Cytotoxicity
  • Macromolecular carriers
  • Solution conformation
  • Synthesis of polyamino acids

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • Pharmaceutical Science

Fingerprint Dive into the research topics of 'Synthesis and conformational studies of poly(L-lysine) based branched polypeptides with Ser and Glu/Leu in the side chains'. Together they form a unique fingerprint.

  • Cite this