A Hydrogel Sensing Pathological Urate Concentrations

Authors

  • Christian Geraths,

    1. Faculty of Biology and BIOSS Center for Biological Signalling Studies, University of Freiburg, Schänzlestrasse 18, 79104 Freiburg, Germany
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  • Erik H. Christen,

    1. Faculty of Biology and BIOSS Center for Biological Signalling Studies, University of Freiburg, Schänzlestrasse 18, 79104 Freiburg, Germany
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  • Wilfried Weber

    Corresponding author
    1. Faculty of Biology and BIOSS Center for Biological Signalling Studies, University of Freiburg, Schänzlestrasse 18, 79104 Freiburg, Germany
    • Faculty of Biology and BIOSS Center for Biological Signalling Studies, University of Freiburg, Schänzlestrasse 18, 79104 Freiburg, Germany.
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Abstract

Metabolite-responsive hydrogels that detect pathological metabolite concentrations and react by releasing a therapeutic stimulus hold high promises in treating metabolic diseases. In this study, a hydrogel is described that discriminates between physiological and pathological concentrations of urate, the causative agent of gouty arthritis. The hydrogel is synthesized by coupling a dimeric variant of the Deinococcus radiodurans-derived urate repressor HucR to linear polyacrylamide. The protein-grafted polymer is crosslinked to form a hydrogel by a multimeric hucO DNA sequence [hucO]n specifically binding HucR. At elevated urate concentrations, HucR dissociates from [hucO]n thereby weakening the hydrogel structure and resulting in its dissolution.

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