User:Maureen McKeague

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Maureen McKeague
Maureen McKeague

Maureen McKeague
ETH Zürich
LFO D 14
Schmelzbergstrasse 9
8092 Zürich
Email me through OpenWetWare

I work in the Sturla lab


Research interests

I have been fascinated by nucleic acids since I learned about the physical basis of genetic inheritance. As a chemist, I view these biopolymers as functional and adaptable macromolecules with limitless potential. Therefore, my past, current, and future research aims to study the unique capabilities of synthetic nucleic acids and use them to solve challenges in health, medicine, and the environment.


  1. Alssafin, A.; McKeague, M. Functional nucleic acids as in vivo metabolite and ion biosensors Biosensors and Bioelectronics, 2017, 94, 94–106.
  2. McKeague, M.; Ranganathan, V.; De Girolamo, A.; Valenzano, S.; Pascale, M.; Smith, M.; DeRosa, M.C. Comparison of In-Solution Biorecognition Properties of Aptamers against Ochratoxin A, Toxins, 2016, 8 (11), 336-348.
  3. Wang, Y-H.; McKeague, M.; Hsu, T.M.; Smolke, C.D. Design and Construction of Generalizable RNA-Protein Hybrid Controllers by Level-Matched Genetic Signal Amplification Cell Systems, 2016, 3 (6), 549–562.
  4. McKeague, M.; Wang, Y-H.; Cravens, A.; Win, M.N.; Smolke, C.D. Engineering a Microbial Platform for de novo Biosynthesis of Diverse Methylxanthines Metabolic Engineering, 2016, 38, 191–203.
  5. Valenzano, S.; De Girolamo, A.; DeRosa, M.C.; McKeague, M.; Schena, R.; Catucci, L.; Pascale, M. Screening and Identification of DNA Aptamers to Tyramine Using in Vitro Selection and High-Throughput Sequencing. ACS Combinatorial Science, 2016, 18 (6), 302–313.
  6. McKeague, M.; Wong, R.S.; Smolke, C.D. Opportunities in the Design and Application of RNA for Gene Expression Control Nucleic Acids Research, 2016, 44 (7),2987-2999
  7. McKeague, M.; Wang, Y-H.; Smolke, C.D. In Vitro Screening and in Silico Modeling of RNA-Based Gene Expression Control ACS Chemical Biology, 2015, 10 (11), 2463–2467.
  8. McKeague, M.; McConnell, E.M.; Cruz-Toledo, J.; Bernard, E.D.; Pach, A.; Zhang, X.; Beking, M.; Francis, T.; Giamberardino, A.; Cabecinha, A.; Ruscito, A.; Aranda-Rodriguez, R.; Dumontier, M.; DeRosa, M.C. Analysis of In Vitro Aptamer Selection Parameters. Journal of Molecular Evolution, 2015, 81(5), 150-161.
  9. Frost, N.R.; McKeague, M.; Falcioni, D.; DeRosa, M.C. An in Solution Assay For Parallel Interrogation of Structure and Affinity of Small Molecule-Binding Aptamers, Analyst, 2015, 140 (8) 6643–6651.
  10. McKeague, M.; De Girolamo, A.; Valenzano, S.; Pascale, M.; Ruscito, A.; Ranganathan, V.; Frost, N.; Hill, K.; Smith, M.; McConnell, E.; DeRosa, M.C.Comprehensive Analytical Comparison of Strategies Used for Small Molecule Aptamer Evaluation, Analytical Chemistry, 2015, 87 (17), 8608–8612.
  11. Chang, A.L.; McKeague, M.; Smolke, C.D. Facile Characterization of Aptamer Kinetic and Equilibrium Binding Properties Using Surface Plasmon Resonance In: Burke-Aguero, D., editor. Methods in Enzymology. 2014, 549, 451-466.
  12. McKeague, M.; DeRosa, M.C. Aptamers and SELEX: Tools for the Development of Transformative Molecular Recognition Technology, Aptamers and Synthetic Antibodies, 2014, 1 (1), 12-16.
  13. McKeague, M.; Ranganathan, V.; Hill, K.; Bardozy, V.; Mezaros, T.; DeRosa, M.C. Selection and Characterization of a Novel DNA Aptamer For Label-Free Fluorescence Biosensing of Ochratoxin A, Toxins, 2014, 6 (8), 2435-2452.
  14. Chang A.L.; McKeague, M.; Liang, J.C.; Smolke, C.D. Kinetic and Equilibrium Binding Characterization of Aptamers to Small Molecules using a Label-Free, Sensitive, and Scalable Platform, Analytical Chemistry, 2014, 86 (7), 3273–3278.
  15. Mastronardi, E.; McKeague, M.; Monreal, C.; DeRosa, M.C. Development and Application of Crop Exudate Specific Aptamers, Journal of Biomolecular Structure and Dynamics, 2013, 31 (1), 89.
  16. McKeague, M.; Foster, A.; Miguel, Y.; Giamberardino, A.; Verdin, C.; Chan, J.Y.; DeRosa, M.C. Development of a DNA aptamer for direct and selective homocysteine detection in human serum, RSC Advances, 2013, 3 (46), 24415-24422.
  17. McKeague, M.; DeRosa, M.C. Challenges and Opportunities for Small Molecule Aptamer Development, Journal of Nucleic Acids, 2012.
  18. Cruz-Toledo, J.; McKeague, M.; Zhang, X.; Giamberardino, A.; McConnell, E.; Francis, T.; DeRosa, M.C.; Dumontier, M. Aptamer Base: A collaborative knowledge base to describe aptamers and SELEX experiments. Database: Journal of Biological Databases and Curation. 2012.
  19. McKeague, M.; Giamberardino, A.; DeRosa, M.C. Advances in Aptamer-Based Biosensors for Food Safety, Environmental Biosensors. 2011, Vernon Somerset (Ed.) ISBN: 9789533074863, InTech. DOI:10.5772/22350
  20. De Girolamo, A.; McKeague, M.; Miller, J.D.; DeRosa, M.C.; Visconti, A. Determination of Ochratoxin A in Wheat After Clean-Up through a DNA Aptamer-Based Solid Phase Extraction Column. Food Chem. 2011, 127 (3), 1378-1384.
  21. McKeague, M.; Bradley, C.R.; De Girolamo, A.; Visconti, A.; Miller, J.D.; Derosa, M.C. Screening and Initial Binding Assessment of Fumonisin B(1) Aptamers, Int. J. Mol. Sci. 2010, 11 (12), 4864-4881.
  22. Luo, X.; McKeague, M.; Pitre, S.; Dumontier, M.; Green, J.; Golshani, A.; Derosa, M.C.; Dehne, F. Computational Approaches Toward the Design of Pools for the in Vitro Selection of Complex Aptamers, RNA. 2010, 16 (11), 2252-2262.

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