Mal-PEG-acid contains a carboxylic acid functional group (-COOH) attached to the end of a PEG chain, with a maleimide group (-NHCOCH=CH2) located at the other end of the chain.
The carboxylic acid group allows for the conjugation of Mal-PEG-acid to other molecules via peptide bond formation. The maleimide group, on the other hand, enables the conjugation of Mal-PEG-acid to thiol-containing molecules, such as cysteine residues in proteins and peptides. This unique combination of functional groups offers a wide range of possibilities for the development of novel drug delivery systems.
Mal-PEG-acid has been widely used in the pharmaceutical industry for the synthesis of antibody-drug conjugates (ADCs). ADCs are a promising class of targeted therapeutics that combine the specificity of monoclonal antibodies with the potency of cytotoxic drugs. Mal-PEG-acid is used to link the antibody to the drug molecule, creating a stable and selective conjugate that can specifically target cancer cells while sparing healthy cells.