CARELL GROUP Research – RNA Chemistry

The Chemical Variety of RNA


The discovery of the new nucleobases in DNA has re-ignited interest in studying modified bases in RNA as well. It has been long known that tRNA contains numerous modified bases that are needed to fine-tune the translational process.

The Carell group developed new synthetic methods and prepared many of the modified RNA bases, sometimes in stable isotope-labelled versions, to enable exact quantification using sophisticated mass spectrometry. Importantly, we found altered levels of the non-canonical bases in cancer tissues, which may be an avenue towards new cancer diagnostics.

Modified RNA bases synthesized by the Carell group with isotope labels for mass spectrometry based quantification. Red boxes show 13C centers.

Highlight publication:

"N6-methyladenosine (m6A) recruits and repels proteins to regulate mRNA homeostasis"

R. R. Edupuganti, S. Geiger, R. G. H. Lindeboom, H. Shi, P. J. Hsu, Z. Lu, S.-Y. Wang, M. P. A. Baltissen, P. W. T. C. Jansen, M. Rossa, M. Müller, H. G. Stunnenberg, C. He*, T. Carell*, M. Vermeulen*
Nature Struct. Mol. Biol. 2017, doi:10.1038/nsmb.3462

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