An Environmentally Sensitive Fluorescent Dye as a Multidimensional Probe of Amyloid Formation

14 Sep 2017

We have explored amyloid formation using poly(amino acid) model systems in which differences in peptide secondary structure and hydrophobicity can be introduced in a controlled manner. We show that an environmentally sensitive fluorescent dye, dapoxyl, is able to identify β-sheet structure and hydrophobic surfaces, structural features likely to be related to toxicity, as a result of changes in its excitation and emission profiles and its relative quantum yield. These results show that dapoxyl is a multidimensional probe of the time dependence of amyloid aggregation, which provides information about the presence and nature of metastable aggregation intermediates that is inaccessible to the conventional probes that rely on changes in quantum yield alone.