Abstract by Daniel Johnston
Chemistry and Biochemistry
Using copper-bound molecules to kill the flu.
We are developing novel copper-bound molecules which can be used to kill drug resistant influenza viruses. Tests have shown that copper binds irreversibly in the M2 proton channel of the virus which prevents nuclear acidification and viral reproduction. Compounds containing nitrogen may be used with ligands such as N-methylimidazole to bind copper ions. Adamantyl groups may be attached to give specificity in directing the molecule to bind in the M2 channel. My project is synthesizing these novel compounds with specific attention to compounds based on Amantadine and 1,4,7-TACN. I synthesize and characterize the molecules before complexing them with copper and sending them to Dr David Busath's lab for testing against both normal and mutated viruses.