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Chemosensory Protein Expression

Inscent, Inc. has been involved in the identification, expression, and characterization of chemosensory proteins from insect species such as the malaria-transmitting mosquito, Anopheles gambiae; the Glassy-winged sharpshooter, Homalodisca coagulata, that transmits Pierce’s Disease, a major threat to the California wine industry; the codling moth, Cydia pomonella, a major agricultural pest; and Apis mellifera, the European honeybee.  Taking advantage of DNA sequence conservation across species boundaries, we have been able to develop an extensive portfolio of insect chemosensory genes and the necessary bioinformatic methodologies to rapidly identify more chemosensory genes from other insect species. We have also developed specific methods and procedures to efficiently express milligram quantities of functional recombinant insect chemosensory proteins in vitro.

Inscent, Inc. has developed two proprietary assay systems capable identifying small molecules that interact (bind) with insect chemosensory proteins or other proteins of interest. Both assays are based on optical detection methodologies, and neither assay requires labeling or any other alteration of the examined protein or the potential interacting molecules.

Deligo Assay System

The Deligo assay system is highly sensitive, as it utilizes a surface plasmon resonance biosensor to detect molecular interactions. We have optimized this assay to take full advantage of the sensitivity inherent in this system while examining candidate molecules for the ability to interact with functional insect chemosensory proteins. The strengths of this assay system are the high sensitivity and the ability to collect real-time interaction data. Kinetic analysis is also possible in silico with this assay system. Deligo detects the binding of a molecule onto any domain or region of an insect chemosensory protein, including the ligand-binding pocket.

Attenu Assay System

The Attenu assay system is a proprietary assay system Inscent, Inc. is now developing to isolate molecules capable of interacting with insect chemosensory proteins. Attenu is a high throughput assay system based on fluorescence that has the potential to perform thousands to tens of thousands of assays/day.