The Dzyuba Research Group


Sergei V. Dzyuba, Ph.D.

Associate Professor

Department of Chemistry

Texas Christian University

Fort Worth, TX 76129

Office: 422 Sid W. Richardson Building

Phone: (817) 257-6218

Fax: (817) 257-5851


Click-fluorescent dyes for recognition of amyloids

    Design and synthesis of click-BODIPY and click-aza-BODIPY dyes that could report on and differentiate among various conformations of amyloids, in particular soluble amyloid oligomers (Aβ) involved in the occurrence and progression of Alzheimer’s disease. A dye (at nM concentrations) that provides a significant (1 to 2 orders of magnitude) emission enhancement upon binding to a specific Aβ oligomer should be a suitable candidate for in vivo studies, which is our long-term objective. Specifically, we have been focusing on the following:

Synthesis of structurally and functionally diverse small molecules based on BODIPY and aza-BODIPY dye scaffolds using click chemistry approaches as well as mechanochemical and solvent-free protocols;

Investigation of interactions of click-BODIPY and click-aza-BODIPY dyes with soluble oligomers of amyloid peptides and other amyloidogenic proteins using spectroscopic techniques;

Design of easily synthetically accessible BODIPY-based rotors, and their applications as molecular viscometers in membrane/cellular environments

Ionic liquid-controlled intra- and intermolecular interactions

Establishing and investigating the paradigm that structural variations within the cationic and anionic counterparts of ionic liquids can control the conformational and stereochemical bias of small molecules. The ability to control chemical, physical and structural properties of molecules and their assemblies by simply placing them in specifically designed solvents is currently an underdeveloped area of research, but it could represent a fundamentally interesting and significant paradigm with far-reaching applications. Specifically, we have been focusing on the following:

Ionic liquid-controlled intramolecular interactions – investigating the ability of ionic liquids to affect structural (conformational and/or stereochemical) integrity of small molecules via modification of the anion and cation pair of the ionic liquids;

Ionic liquid-controlled intermolecular interactions – evaluating the viability of ionic liquids as suitable media for modulating the self-assembly of small molecules, i.e., dimerization/oligomerization, as well as the formation of supramolecular assemblies;

Aggregation of ionic liquids as one of the major physical properties that affects solute–ionic liquid interactions