Peptide arrays are powerful tools for the investigation of protein-protein and drug-protein interactions. Screening peptides for potentially active compounds with peptide arrays is a very convenient method for basic and applied research such as drug development. We describe here some of the principles and applications of peptide microarrays.
For peptide-based drug design, with peptide microarrays it is possible to screen a high number of peptides on a small chip. However, due to the miniscule amounts of peptides synthesized directly on chips, and because of interactions of the peptides with the chip surface, this approach can be difficult and unreliable. These disadvantages can be overcome by using peptide microarrays on cellulose membranes.
These membranes are useful for screening on the solid phase as well as for investigation of the peptides in solution-phase assays. Cellulose membranes are porous, hydrophilic, flexible and stable in organic as well as aqueous solvents. These properties make cellulose very useful for biochemical and biological studies in aqueous as well as in organic media. They are a major reason why cellulose is still the most widely used material for microarray membranes.
Depending on the purpose of the screening, different array formats can be generated. The maximum size of our array format would be about 8 cm x 13 cm.
The standard size of the spots containing peptides is between 1 and 2 mm in diameter (small spots). We offer the synthesis of up to 1400 peptides per membrane.
For solution assays, we synthesize the peptides in spots with a diameter of 5-7 mm (large spots) with about 110 peptides per membrane. In this section, we present some array techniques to screen for active peptides on the membrane.
Where are the techniques?