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Ozlem Yaren


  • B. Sc. in Chemistry, Koc University, Turkey (2004)
  • M. Sc. in Materials Science, Universität Ulm, Germany (2006)
  • Ph. D. in Chemistry and Molecular Sciences, Universität Bern, Switzerland (2011)

Research summary

My PhD research focused on the design and validation of a combinatorial assay that allows the rapid and parallel screening of novel potential heterocycles that might be incorporated into DNA, from a library of heterocyclic amines for expansion of the genetic alphabet. I also explored the use of diamonds as a solid phase support for immobilizing DNA and studied their interaction with variety of enzymes.

Currently, I research on the development of molecular biology tools to be used in in vitro selection of functional DNA molecules, including those that bind to targets (aptamers) and catalyze reactions, as well as polymerases that manipulate unnatural DNA molecules. I am also actively working on the development of new design strategies to create libraries of oligonucleotides made of non-standard nucleoside analogs using isothermal amplification techniques to select for aptamers or DNA or RNA catalyst that perform like proteins.

Now, I am in the process of developing low-cost diagnostics systems to detect and differentiate infectious agents, including respiratory diseases (e.g. MERS-coV), noroviruses, mosquito-borne viruses (e.g. Zika, chikungunya and dengue viruses), drug-resistant HIV strains and tick-borne diseases. This work led to diagnostics platforms to detect viral diseases at or near points of sampling.

A list of recent publications are listed below. For a more complete list, please see my publications on the NCBI website or Google Scholar.

Recent Publications


Standard and AEGIS nicking molecular beacons detect amplicons from the Middle East respiratory syndrome coronavirus
Ozlem Yaren, Lyudmyla G. Glushakova, Kevin M. Bradley, Shuichi Hoshika,Steven A. Benner
J Virol Methods (236) , Elsevier 54-61 (2016) doi:10.1016/j.jviromet.2016.07.008


A norovirus detection architecture based on isothermal amplification and expanded genetic systems
Ozlem Yaren, Kevin M. Bradley, Patricia Moussatche, Shuichi Hoshika, Zunyi Yang,Shu Zhu, Stephanie M. Karst, Steven A. Benner
J Virol Methods (237) , Elsevier 64-71 (2016) doi: 10.1016/j.jviromet.2016.08.012


Restriction enzymes cleave DNA immobilized on micron-sized diamond crystallites
Yaren O, Benner SA
Diamond Relat. Mater. , Elsevier (2015) 52, 18-24


Synthesis and incorporation into oligodeoxynucleotides of carbocyclic exo-amino nucleosides
Yaren O, Rothlisberger P, Leumann CJ
Synthesis , Thieme (2012) 7, 1011-1025


A Parallel Screen for the Discovery of Novel DNA Base Pairs
Yaren O, Mosimann M, Leumann CJ
Angew. Chem. Int. Ed. (2011) 50, 1935-1938. PMID: 21328674

(View publication page for Ozlem Yaren)

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