In vitro display technologies are powerful tools for screening peptides with desired functions. We previously proposed a DNA display system in which streptavidin-fused peptides are linked with their encoding DNAs via biotin labels in emulsion compartments and successfully applied it to the screening of random peptide libraries. Here we describe its application to functional and folded proteins. By introducing peptide linkers between streptavidin and fused proteins, we achieved highly efficient (>95%) formation of DNA-protein conjugates. Furthermore, we successfully enriched a glutathione-S-transferase gene by a factor of 20-30-fold per round on glutathione-coupled beads. Thus, DNA display should be useful for rapidly screening or evolving proteins based on affinity selection.
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