On-Demand Detachment of Succinimides on Cysteine to Facilitate (Semi)Synthesis of Challenging Proteins

Ganga B. Vamisetti, Gandhesiri Satish, Prasad Sulkshane, Guy Mann, Michael H. Glickman, Ashraf Brik

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review

24 Scopus citations


The maleimide group is a widely used reagent for bioconjugation of peptides, proteins, and oligonucleotides employing Michael addition and Diels-Alder cycloaddition reactions. However, the utility of this functionality in chemical synthesis of peptides and proteins remains unexplored. We report, for the first time that PdII complexes can mediate the efficient removal of various succinimide derivatives in aqueous conditions. Succinimide removal by PdII was applied for the synthesis of two ubiquitin activity-based probes (Ub-ABPs) employing solid phase chemical ligation (SPCL). SPCL was achieved through a sequential three segment ligation on a polymer support via a maleimide anchor. The obtained probes successfully formed the expected covalent complexes with deubiquitinating enzymes (DUBs) USP2 and USP7, highlighting the use of our new method for efficient preparation of unique synthetic proteins. Importantly, we demonstrate the advantages of our newly developed method for the protection and deprotection of native cysteine with a succinimide group in a peptide fragment derived from thioredoxin-1 (Trx-1) obtained via intein based expression to enable ligation/desulfurization and subsequent disulfide bond formation in a one-pot process.

Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)19558-19569
Number of pages12
JournalJournal of the American Chemical Society
Issue number46
StatePublished - 18 Nov 2020
Externally publishedYes

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • Catalysis
  • General Chemistry
  • Biochemistry
  • Colloid and Surface Chemistry


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