Chemical Biology

The E.coli ribosome has extraordinary peptide-synthetic abilities. In the Rogers lab, we use flexizyme technology, originally developed in the lab of Hiroaki Suga (University of Tokyo), to load non-canonical amino acids onto in vitro transcribed tRNA, for use by purified ribosomes in test tubes. This powerful chemical biology tool allows diverse non-canonical amino acids, even non-amino acid chemical structures, to be incorporated into peptides of custom sequence.

Cyclic peptide discovery

Natural product cyclic peptides excel at protein binding. Cyclic peptides, discovered de novo for chosen protein targets, are a promising alternative to small molecules or biologic drugs. In the Rogers lab, we use flexizyme technology and the ribosome to synthesize cyclic peptides - lots of them. Trillions of unique cyclic peptides, more than there are stars in the galaxy, can be made in a single test tube and screened for drug-like binding ability.


We thank the following organisations for enabling ambitious high-reward science