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Aptamer Applications in Emerging Viral Diseases

Department of Parasitology, Institute of Biomedical Sciences, University of São Paulo, São Paulo 05508-000-SP, Brazil
Department of Biochemistry, Institute of Chemistry, University of São Paulo, São Paulo 05508-900-SP, Brazil
Authors to whom correspondence should be addressed.
These authors contributed equally to this work.
Academic Editors: Alfredo Berzal-Herranz and Cristina Romero-López
Pharmaceuticals 2021, 14(7), 622;
Received: 3 May 2021 / Revised: 31 May 2021 / Accepted: 1 June 2021 / Published: 28 June 2021
(This article belongs to the Special Issue Potential of the Aptamers to Fill Therapeutic and Diagnostic Gaps)
Aptamers are single-stranded DNA or RNA molecules which are submitted to a process denominated SELEX. SELEX uses reiterative screening of a random oligonucleotide library to identify high-affinity binders to a chosen target, which may be a peptide, protein, or entire cells or viral particles. Aptamers can rival antibodies in target recognition, and benefit from their non-proteic nature, ease of modification, increased stability, and pharmacokinetic properties. This turns them into ideal candidates for diagnostic as well as therapeutic applications. Here, we review the recent accomplishments in the development of aptamers targeting emerging viral diseases, with emphasis on recent findings of aptamers binding to coronaviruses. We focus on aptamer development for diagnosis, including biosensors, in addition to aptamer modifications for stabilization in body fluids and tissue penetration. Such aptamers are aimed at in vivo diagnosis and treatment, such as quantification of viral load and blocking host cell invasion, virus assembly, or replication, respectively. Although there are currently no in vivo applications of aptamers in combating viral diseases, such strategies are promising for therapy development in the future. View Full-Text
Keywords: aptamers; SELEX; SARS-CoV-2; viral infections; aptasensor; aptazyme aptamers; SELEX; SARS-CoV-2; viral infections; aptasensor; aptazyme
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MDPI and ACS Style

Krüger, A.; de Jesus Santos, A.P.; de Sá, V.; Ulrich, H.; Wrenger, C. Aptamer Applications in Emerging Viral Diseases. Pharmaceuticals 2021, 14, 622.

AMA Style

Krüger A, de Jesus Santos AP, de Sá V, Ulrich H, Wrenger C. Aptamer Applications in Emerging Viral Diseases. Pharmaceuticals. 2021; 14(7):622.

Chicago/Turabian Style

Krüger, Arne, Ana P. de Jesus Santos, Vanessa de Sá, Henning Ulrich, and Carsten Wrenger. 2021. "Aptamer Applications in Emerging Viral Diseases" Pharmaceuticals 14, no. 7: 622.

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