Fluorescent Photolabile Caging Groups with Tuneable Sub-Cellular Localisation
Carmichael, Cailin Annie
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Photopharmacology is a rapidly emerging area of interest in the context of drug delivery. With the potential to dictate when and where a drug is active within a biological system, the combination of photopharmacology with targeted drug delivery could offer significant improvements for drug delivery by reducing toxicities and increasing bioavailability. Photocaging groups offer the ability to combine these two areas, with the photocage inhibiting the bioactivity of the drug until it is released, as well as providing a structure to which organelle-targeting ligands can be attached. This project aims to develop novel photocaging groups that also function as organelle-targeted drug delivery systems. Coumarin-derived photocages were selected for this project due to their fluorescent properties, non-toxic nature in biological systems, and ability to decage at wavelengths higher than 400 nm. To date, a novel coumarin-derived caging group containing a suitable synthetic handle to which organelle targeting ligands can be introduced has been developed.