Publication Date

Fall 2012

Document Type

Project Summary

Degree Name

Master of Science


Analytical Chemistry

First Advisor

Walter Henne, Jr., Ph.D.

Second Advisor

Karen D'Arcy, Ph.D.

Third Advisor

Stephen Kent, M.B.A.


Folate is a member of vitamin B family and plays an essential role in cell survival by participating in the biosynthesis of nucleic and amino acids. Receptors folic acid are frequently over expressed on epithelial cancer cells. These receptors are believed to serve as a receptor-mediated transport system of folic acid into cancer cells and cells associated with inflammation. Interesting, most normal cells in the body have lower frequency of these receptors. Based on these attributes, folate based drug delivery, imaging systems, and diagnostic systems are in several stages of development worldwide.

In this current project, we have characterized the affinity of the proprietary folate PEG-biotin-fluorescein- (FPBF) conjugate synthesized by Dr. Walter Henne. We have successfully purified and characterized FPBF capture ligand using LC/MS. Further, affinity studies of FPFB towards Streptavidin coated Dynabeads was carried out utilizing fluorescein microscopy. It was demonstrated that the conjugate has site specific interaction toward the Streptavidin coated Dynabeads, a much important characteristic for the effective cancer cell capture. The inexpensive and previously produced folate probe may be substituted for the more costly and cumbersome antibody based ligands, which are typically used for this method of drug delivery system to treat cancer. This method significantly reduces false positive events associated with non-specific binding and capture of non-targeted cells (a problem associated with the aforementioned affinity capture protocols).


Student ID number has been redacted from the title page by OPUS staff.