Abigail Otto

Year: Senior

Major(s):  French

Mentor: Olsen, Ken

Department: Chemistry & Biochemistry

Project Title: Creating a Hemoglobin-Based Oxygen-Carrier Using the Method of Inside-Out PEGylation

Project Abstract: The proposed research will produce a potential hemoglobin-based nanoparticle oxygen carrier. The proposed procedure will first produce a cross-linked bovine hemoglobin tetramer using methods previously developed in the Olsen laboratory. Up to eight of these XLHb molecules will then be linked together with a maleimide-PEG polymer via the thiol groups, which will increase the chain's size and its affinity to oxygen. Using the “inside out” technique may also produce desired results. The increase in size should prevent the vasoconstriction that is observed with smaller hemoglobin-based blood substitutes. Since both the initial cross-linking and the modification of the thiol group produce high oxygen affinity hemoglobin, the proposed hemoglobin nanoparticle should only deliver oxygen to hypoxic tissues.