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Title:
PROTEIN TRANSLATIONAL CONTROL
Document Type and Number:
WIPO Patent Application WO/2020/214806
Kind Code:
A1
Abstract:
Provided herein are compositions and methods for regulating protein translation. The compositions include a cap-conjugated oligonucleotide comprising an m7G cap or a variant or analog thereof conjugated to an oligonucleotide, wherein the oligonucleotide is capable of specifically hybridizing with a target sequence in an RNA molecule. The disclosure further provides methods of regulating translation of an mRNA in a cell, the method comprising contacting the cell with a cap-conjugated oligonucleotide comprising an m7G cap or a variant or analog thereof conjugated to an oligonucleotide, wherein the oligonucleotide comprises a sequence capable of specifically hybridizing with a target sequence in an RNA molecule.

Inventors:
YEO EUGENE (US)
TAN FREDERICK (US)
Application Number:
PCT/US2020/028501
Publication Date:
October 22, 2020
Filing Date:
April 16, 2020
Export Citation:
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Assignee:
UNIV CALIFORNIA (US)
International Classes:
C12N15/11; C07H21/02; C12N15/113
Foreign References:
US6013639A2000-01-11
US20180273576A12018-09-27
US20150232844A12015-08-20
Attorney, Agent or Firm:
GREY, Kathryn et al. (US)
Download PDF:
Claims:
WHAT IS CLAIMED IS:

1. A cap-conjugated oligonucleotide comprising an m7G cap or a variant or analog thereof conjugated to an oligonucleotide, wherein the oligonucleotide is capable of specifically hybridizing with a target sequence in an RNA molecule.

2. The cap-conjugated oligonucleotide of claim 1, wherein the RNA molecule is a messenger RNA (mRNA).

3. The cap-conjugated oligonucleotide of claim 2, wherein the mRNA has an endogenous m7G cap.

4. The cap-conjugated oligonucleotide of claim 3, wherein the target sequence is downstream of the endogenous m7G cap of the mRNA.

5. The cap-conjugated oligonucleotide of any one of claims 2-4, wherein the mRNA comprises a start codon, and wherein the 5’ end of the target sequence is upstream of the start codon.

6. The cap-conjugated oligonucleotide of claim 5, wherein the 5’ end of the target sequence is between 1 and 50 nucleotides upstream of the first nucleotide of the start codon.

7. The cap-conjugated oligonucleotide of claims 5 or 6, wherein the target sequence comprises the start codon.

8. The cap-conjugated oligonucleotide of any one of claims 2-4, wherein the mRNA comprises a start codon, and wherein the 5’ end of the target sequence is downstream of the start codon.

9. The cap-conjugated oligonucleotide of claim 8, wherein the 5’ end of the target sequence is between 1 and 50 nucleotides downstream of the last nucleotide of the start codon.

10. The cap-conjugated oligonucleotide of any one of claims 1-9, wherein the oligonucleotide is at least 80% complementary to the target sequence.

11. The cap-conjugated oligonucleotide of claim 10, wherein the oligonucleotide is at least 90% complementary to the target sequence.

12. The cap-conjugated oligonucleotide of claim 1, wherein the oligonucleotide comprises about 5 to about 30 nucleotides.

13. The cap-conjugated oligonucleotide of any one of claims 1-12, wherein the

oligonucleotide comprises one or more backbone modifications.

14. The cap-conjugated oligonucleotide of claim 13, wherein the oligonucleotide comprises one or more phosphorothioate linkages.

15. The cap-conjugated oligonucleotide of any one of claims 1-14, wherein the

oligonucleotide comprises one or more locked nucleic acids (LNAs).

16. The cap-conjugated oligonucleotide of claim 15, wherein the oligonucleotide comprises 5 to 15 LNAs.

17. The cap-conjugated oligonucleotide of claim 16, wherein the 5 to 15 LNAs are consecutive.

18. The cap-conjugated oligonucleotide of any one of claims 1-17, wherein the

oligonucleotide comprises one or more substituted sugar moieties.

19. The cap-conjugated oligonucleotide of any one of claims 1-18, wherein the

oligonucleotide comprises one or more nucleotides modified at the 2’ position of the sugar.

20. The cap-conjugated oligonucleotide of claim 19, wherein the one or more nucleotides comprise a 2’ O-methyl.

21. The cap-conjugated oligonucleotide of claim 20, wherein the one or more nucleotides comprise 2’-0-methoxyethyl.

22. The cap-conjugated oligonucleotide of claim 20, wherein the oligonucleotide comprises 10 to 25 nucleotides having a 2’ O-methyl.

23. The cap-conjugated oligonucleotide of claim 1, wherein the oligonucleotide comprises fewer than 25 nucleotides.

24. The cap-conjugated oligonucleotide of claim 23, wherein the oligonucleotide comprises one or more LNAs and one or more nucleotides having a 2’ O-methyl.

25. The cap-conjugated oligonucleotide of claim 24, wherein the oligonucleotide comprises one or more LNAs and one or more nucleotides having a 2’-0-methoxy ethyl.

26. The cap-conjugated oligonucleotide of any one of claims 1-25, wherein the m7G cap or a variant or analog thereof comprises a structure of

wherein a’ is methyl or a functional group configured to enhance association with an EIF4E protein, r’is methyl or a functional group configured to prevent further extension, b’ is oxygen, sulfur, or boron, c’ is a nitrogenous base, and nl is equal to or fewer than 4.

27. The cap-conjugated oligonucleotide of claim 26, wherein a’ is (4-Chloropheny 1-ethyl)- or (4-Fluorophenyl-ethyl)-.

28. The cap-conjugated oligonucleotide of claim 26 or 27, wherein r’ is -O-Methyl.

29. The cap-conjugated oligonucleotide of claim 24, wherein c’ is an adenine, guanine, cytosine, thymine, or uracil.

30. The cap-conjugated oligonucleotide of any one of claims 1-29, wherein the m7G cap or a variant or analog thereof comprises a structure of

wherein a’ is methyl or a functional group configured to enhance association with an EIF4E protein, b’ is oxygen, sulfur, or boron, and nl is equal to or fewer than 4.

31. The cap-conjugated oligonucleotide of claim 30, wherein a’ is (4-Chlorophenyl-ethyl)- or (4-Fluorophenyl-ethyl)-.

32. The cap-conjugated oligonucleotide of any one of claims 1-31, wherein the m7G cap or a variant or analog thereof is conjugated to the oligonucleotide via a linker.

33. The cap-conjugated oligonucleotide of claim 32, wherein the linker is a polymeric linker.

34. The cap-conjugated oligonucleotide of claim 33, wherein the linker is polyethylene glycol (PEG).

35. The cap-conjugated oligonucleotide of claim 34, wherein the linker comprises 2 to 30 PEG subunits.

36. The cap-conjugated oligonucleotide of any one of claims 1-35, wherein the m7G cap or a variant or analog thereof is conjugated to the 5’ end of the oligonucleotide.

37. The cap-conjugated oligonucleotide of any one of claims 1-35, wherein the m7G cap or a variant or analog thereof is conjugated to the 3’ end of the oligonucleotide.

38. The cap-conjugated oligonucleotide of any one of claims 1-35, wherein the m7G cap or a variant or analog thereof is conjugated to a nucleotide between the 5’ end and the 3’ end of the oligonucleotide.

39. The cap-conjugated oligonucleotide of any one of claims 1-30, wherein two or more m7G caps or a variant or analog thereof are conjugated to the oligonucleotide.

40. A pharmaceutical composition comprising the cap-conjugated oligonucleotide of any one of claims 1-39 and a pharmaceutically acceptable carrier.

41. A method of regulating translation of an mRNA in a cell, the method comprising contacting the cell with a cap-conjugated oligonucleotide comprising an m7G cap or a variant or analog thereof conjugated to an oligonucleotide, wherein the oligonucleotide comprises a sequence capable of specifically hybridizing with a target sequence in an RNA molecule.

42. The method of claim 41, wherein the RNA molecule is an mRNA.

43. The method of claim 42, wherein the mRNA has an endogenous m7G cap.

44. The method of claim 43, wherein the target sequence is downstream of the endogenous m7G cap of the mRNA.

45. The method of any one of claims 42-44, wherein the mRNA comprises a start codon, and wherein the 5’ end of the target sequence is upstream of the start codon.

46. The method of claim 45, wherein the 5’ end of the target sequence is between 1 and 50 nucleotides upstream of the first nucleotide of the start codon.

47. The method of claims 45 or 46, wherein the target sequence comprises the start codon.

48. The method of any one of claims 42-44, wherein the mRNA comprises a start codon, and wherein the 5’ end of the target sequence is downstream of the start codon.

49. The method of claim 48, wherein the 5’ end of the target sequence is between 1 and 50 nucleotides downstream of the last nucleotide of the start codon.

50. The method of any one of claims 41-49, wherein the oligonucleotide is at least 80% complementary to the target sequence.

51. The method of claim 50, wherein the oligonucleotide is at least 90% complementary to the target sequence.

52. The method of claim 41, wherein the oligonucleotide comprises about 5 to about 30 nucleotides.

53. The method of any one of claims 41-52, wherein the oligonucleotide comprises one or more backbone modifications.

54. The method of claim 53, wherein the oligonucleotide comprises one or more phosphorothioate linkages.

55. The method of any one of claims 41-54, wherein the oligonucleotide comprises one or more locked nucleic acids (LNAs).

56. The method of claim 55, wherein the oligonucleotide comprises 5 to 15 LNAs.

57. The method of claim 56, wherein the 5 to 15 LNAs are consecutive.

58. The method of any one of claims 41-57, wherein the oligonucleotide comprises one or more substituted sugar moieties.

59. The method of any one of claims 41-58, wherein the oligonucleotide comprises one or more nucleotides modified at the 2’ position of the sugar.

60. The method of claim 59, wherein the one or more nucleotides comprise a 2’ O-methyl.

61. The method of claim 60, wherein the one or more nucleotides comprise 2’-0- methoxy ethyl.

62. The method of claim 60, wherein the oligonucleotide comprises 10 to 25 nucleotides having a 2’ O-methyl.

63. The method of claim 41, wherein the oligonucleotide comprises fewer than 25 nucleotides.

64. The method of claim 63, wherein the oligonucleotide comprises one or more LNAs and one or more nucleotides having a 2’ O-methyl.

65. The method of claim 64, wherein the one or more nucleotides comprise 2’-0- methoxy ethyl.

66. The method of any one of claims 41-65, wherein the m7G cap or a variant or analog thereof comprises a structure of

wherein a’ is methyl or a functional group configured to enhance association with an EIF4E protein, r’is methyl or a functional group configured to prevent further extension, b’ is oxygen, sulfur or boron, c’ is a nitrogenous base, and nl is equal to or fewer than 4.

67. The method of claim 66, wherein a’ is (4-Chloropheny 1-ethyl)- or (4-Fluorophenyl- ethyl)-.

68. The method of claim 66 or 67, wherein is -O-Methyl.

69. The method of claim 66, wherein c’ is an adenine, guanine, cytosine, thymine, or uracil.

70. The method of any one of claims 41-65, wherein the m7G cap or a variant or analog thereof comprises a structure of

wherein a’ is methyl or a functional group configured to enhance association with an EIF4E protein, b’ is oxygen, sulfur or boron, and nl is equal to or fewer than 4.

71. The method of claim 70, wherein a’ is (4-Chloropheny 1-ethyl)- or (4-Fluorophenyl- ethyl)-.

72. The method of any one of claims 41-71, wherein the m7G cap or a variant or analog thereof is conjugated to the oligonucleotide via a linker.

73. The method of claim 72, wherein the linker is a polymeric linker.

74. The method of claim 73, wherein the linker is polyethylene glycol (PEG).

75. The method of claim 74, wherein the linker comprises 2 to 30 PEG subunits.

76. The method of any one of claims 41-75, wherein the m7G cap or a variant or analog thereof is conjugated to the 5’ end of the oligonucleotide.

77. The method of any one of claims 41-75, wherein the m7G cap or a variant or analog thereof is conjugated to the 3’ end of the oligonucleotide.

78. The method of any one of claims 41-75, wherein the m7G cap or a variant or analog thereof is conjugated to a nucleotide between the 5’ end and the 3’ end of the oligonucleotide.

79. The method of any one of claims 41-78, wherein two or more m7G caps or a variant or analog thereof are conjugated to the oligonucleotide.

Description:
PROTEIN TRAN SU ATIONAU CONTROU

CROSS-REFERENCE TO REUATED APPUICATIONS

This application claims priority to U.S. Patent Application Serial No. 62/834,582, filed April 16, 2019, which is incorporated herein by reference in its entirety.

STATEMENT OF GOVERNMENT SUPPORT

This invention was made with government support under EY029166 and NS103172, awarded by the National Institutes of Health. The government has certain rights in the invention.

BACKGROUND

There exist many methods for downregulating gene expression, including siRNA, miRNA, and anti-sense approaches. Existing methods for enhancing gene expression, such as delivery of mRNAs can be inefficient and technically challenging. Accordingly, there is a need to develop novel approaches for enhancing protein translation.

SUMMARY

In one aspect, provided herein is a cap-conjugated oligonucleotide comprising an m7G cap or a variant or analog thereof conjugated to an oligonucleotide, wherein the oligonucleotide is capable of specifically hybridizing with a target sequence in an RNA molecule. In some embodiments, the RNA molecule is a messenger RNA (mRNA). In some embodiments, the mRNA has an endogenous m7G cap. In some embodiments, the target sequence is downstream of the endogenous m7G cap of the mRNA. In some embodiments, the mRNA comprises a start codon, and wherein the 5’ end of the target sequence is upstream of the start codon. In some embodiments, the 5’ end of the target sequence is between 1 and 50 nucleotides upstream of the first nucleotide of the start codon. In some embodiments, the target sequence comprises the start codon. In some embodiments, the mRNA comprises a start codon, and wherein the 5’ end of the target sequence is downstream of the start codon.

In some embodiments, the 5’ end of the target sequence is between 1 and 50 nucleotides downstream of the last nucleotide of the start codon. In some embodiments, the

oligonucleotide is at least 80% complementary to the target sequence. In some embodiments, the oligonucleotide is at least 90% complementary to the target sequence. In some embodiments, the oligonucleotide comprises about 5 to about 30 nucleotides. In some embodiments, the oligonucleotide comprises one or more backbone modifications. In some embodiments, the oligonucleotide comprises one or more phosphorothioate linkages. In some embodiments, the oligonucleotide comprises one or more locked nucleic acids (LNAs). In some embodiments, the oligonucleotide comprises 5 to 15 LNAs. In some embodiments, the 5 to 15 LNAs are consecutive. In some embodiments, the oligonucleotide comprises one or more substituted sugar moieties. In some embodiments, the oligonucleotide comprises one or more nucleotides modified at the 2’ position of the sugar. In some embodiments, the one or more nucleotides comprise a 2’ O-methyl. In some embodiments, the one or more nucleotides comprise 2’-0-methoxyethyl. In some embodiments, the oligonucleotide comprises 10 to 25 nucleotides having a 2’ O-methyl. In some embodiments, the oligonucleotide comprises fewer than 25 nucleotides. In some embodiments, the oligonucleotide comprises one or more LNAs and one or more nucleotides having a 2’ O-methyl. In some embodiments, the oligonucleotide comprises one or more LNAs and one or more nucleotides having a 2’-0- methoxy ethyl. In some embodiments, the m7G cap or a variant or analog thereof comprises a structure of

wherein a’ is methyl or a functional group configured to enhance association with an EIF4E protein, r’is methyl or a functional group configured to prevent further extension, b’ is oxygen, sulfur, or boron, c’ is a nitrogenous base, and nl is equal to or fewer than 4. In some embodiments, a’ is (4-Chlorophenyl-ethyl)- or (4-Fluorophenyl-ethyl)-. In some

embodiments, r’ is -O-Methyl. In some embodiments, c’ is an adenine, guanine, cytosine, thymine, or uracil. In some embodiments, the m7G cap or a variant or analog thereof comprises a structure of

wherein a’ is methyl or a functional group configured to enhance association with an EIF4E protein, b’ is oxygen, sulfur, or boron, and nl is equal to or fewer than 4. In some embodiments, a’ is (4-Chlorophenyl-ethyl)- or (4-Fluorophenyl-ethyl)-. In some

embodiments, the m7G cap or a variant or analog thereof is conjugated to the oligonucleotide via a linker. In some embodiments, the linker is a polymeric linker. In some embodiments, the linker is polyethylene glycol (PEG). In some embodiments, the linker comprises 2 to 30 PEG subunits. In some embodiments, the m7G cap or a variant or analog thereof is conjugated to the 5’ end of the oligonucleotide. In some embodiments, the m7G cap or a variant or analog thereof is conjugated to the 3’ end of the oligonucleotide. In some embodiments, the m7G cap or a variant or analog thereof is conjugated to a nucleotide between the 5’ end and the 3’ end of the oligonucleotide. In some embodiments, two or more m7G caps or a variant or analog thereof are conjugated to the oligonucleotide. In some aspects, provided herein are pharmaceutical compositions comprising any of the cap- conjugated oligonucleotides described herein and a pharmaceutically acceptable carrier.

In another aspect, provided herein is a method of regulating translation of an mRNA in a cell, the methods comprise contacting the cell with a cap-conjugated oligonucleotide comprising an m7G cap or a variant or analog thereof conjugated to an oligonucleotide, wherein the oligonucleotide comprises a sequence capable of specifically hybridizing with a target sequence in an RNA molecule. In some embodiments, the RNA molecule is an mRNA. In some embodiments, the mRNA has an endogenous m7G cap. In some embodiments, the target sequence is downstream of the endogenous m7G cap of the mRNA. In some embodiments, the mRNA comprises a start codon, and wherein the 5’ end of the target sequence is upstream of the start codon. In some embodiments, the 5’ end of the target sequence is between 1 and 50 nucleotides upstream of the first nucleotide of the start codon. In some embodiments, the target sequence comprises the start codon. In some embodiments, the mRNA comprises a start codon, and wherein the 5’ end of the target sequence is downstream of the start codon. In some embodiments, the 5’ end of the target sequence is between 1 and 50 nucleotides downstream of the last nucleotide of the start codon. In some embodiments, the oligonucleotide is at least 80% complementary to the target sequence. In some embodiments, the oligonucleotide is at least 90% complementary to the target sequence. In some embodiments, the oligonucleotide comprises about 5 to about 30 nucleotides. In some embodiments, the oligonucleotide comprises one or more backbone modifications. In some embodiments, the oligonucleotide comprises one or more

phosphorothioate linkages. In some embodiments, the oligonucleotide comprises one or more locked nucleic acids (LNAs). In some embodiments, the oligonucleotide comprises 5 to 15 LNAs. In some embodiments, the 5 to 15 LNAs are consecutive. In some embodiments, the oligonucleotide comprises one or more substituted sugar moieties. In some embodiments, the oligonucleotide comprises one or more nucleotides modified at the 2’ position of the sugar. In some embodiments, the one or more nucleotides comprise a 2’ O-methyl. In some embodiments, the one or more nucleotides comprise 2’-0-methoxy ethyl. In some embodiments, the oligonucleotide comprises 10 to 25 nucleotides having a 2’ O-methyl. In some embodiments, the oligonucleotide comprises fewer than 25 nucleotides. In some embodiments, the oligonucleotide comprises one or more LNAs and one or more nucleotides having a 2’ O-methyl. In some embodiments, the one or more nucleotides comprise 2’-0- methoxy ethyl. In some embodiments, the m7G cap or a variant or analog thereof comprises a structure of

wherein a’ is methyl or a functional group configured to enhance association with an EIF4E protein, r’is methyl or a functional group configured to prevent further extension, b’ is oxygen, sulfur or boron, c’ is a nitrogenous base, and nl is equal to or fewer than 4. In some embodiments, a’ is (4-Chlorophenyl-ethyl)- or (4-Fluorophenyl-ethyl)-. In some

embodiments, r’ is -O-Methyl. In some embodiments, c’ is an adenine, guanine, cytosine, thymine, or uracil. In some embodiments, the m7G cap or a variant or analog thereof comprises a structure of

wherein a’ is methyl or a functional group configured to enhance association with an EIF4E protein, b’ is oxygen, sulfur or boron, and nl is equal to or fewer than 4. In some embodiments, a’ is (4-Chlorophenyl-ethyl)- or (4-Fluorophenyl-ethyl)-. In some embodiments, the m7G cap or a variant or analog thereof is conjugated to the oligonucleotide via a linker. In some embodiments, the linker is a polymeric linker. In some embodiments, the linker is polyethylene glycol (PEG). In some embodiments, the linker comprises 2 to 30 PEG subunits. In some embodiments, the m7G cap or a variant or analog thereof is conjugated to the 5’ end of the oligonucleotide. In some embodiments, the m7G cap or a variant or analog thereof is conjugated to the 3’ end of the oligonucleotide. In some embodiments, the m7G cap or a variant or analog thereof is conjugated to a nucleotide between the 5’ end and the 3’ end of the oligonucleotide. In some embodiments, two or more m7G caps or a variant or analog thereof are conjugated to the oligonucleotide.

Where values are described in terms of ranges, it should be understood that the description includes the disclosure of all possible sub-ranges within such ranges, as well as specific numerical values that fall within such ranges irrespective of whether a specific numerical value or specific sub-range is expressly stated. All numerical designations, e.g., pH, temperature, time, concentration, and molecular weight, including ranges, are approximations which are varied ( + ) or ( - ) by increments of 1.0 or 0.1, as appropriate, or alternatively by a variation of +/- 15 %, or alternatively 10%, or alternatively 5%, or alternatively 2%. It is to be understood, although not always explicitly stated, that all numerical designations are preceded by the term“about”. It also is to be understood, although not always explicitly stated, that the reagents described herein are merely exemplary and that equivalents of such are known in the art.

Various embodiments of the features of this disclosure are described herein. However, it should be understood that such embodiments are provided merely by way of example, and numerous variations, changes, and substitutions can occur to those skilled in the art without departing from the scope of this disclosure. It should also be understood that various alternatives to the specific embodiments described herein are also within the scope of this disclosure.

INCORPORATION BY REFERENCE

All publications, patents, and patent applications mentioned in this specification are herein incorporated by reference to the same extent as if each individual publication, patent, or patent application was specifically and individually indicated to be incorporated by reference. To the extent publications, patents, and patent applications incorporated by reference contradict the disclosure contained in the specification, the specification is intended to supersede and/or take precedence over any such contradictory material. DESCRIPTION OF THE DRAWINGS

FIGs. 1A-1C show BRCA1 translational control using m7G cap-conjugated oligonucleotide. FIG. 1 A is a schematic showing an exemplary location for the hybridization sites in the BRCA1 transcript. FIG. IB shows BRCA1 protein expression levels upon treatment with oligonucleotides not conjugated with an m7G cap. FIG. 1C shows BRCA1 protein expression levels upon treatment with m7G cap-conjugated oligonucleotides.

DETAILED DESCRIPTION

The vast majority of gene regulatory drugs have been designed to knockdown gene expression (i.e., siRNAs, miRNAs, anti-sense, etc.). Some methods exist to enhance gene expression, such as the delivery of mRNAs; however, therapeutic delivery of such large and charged RNA molecules is technically challenging, inefficient, not particularly practical and can be highly immunogenic. Classical gene therapy approaches involve delivery of a gene product as viral-encoded products (e.g., AAV or lentivirus-packaged products); however, these methods suffer from not being able to accurately reproduce the correct alternatively spliced isoforms in the correct ratios. Additional methods of regulating protein translation include those utilizing engineered RNA binding proteins. One such engineered RNA binding protein repurposes the binding activity of PUF family of proteins, which recognize RNA sequences at single base resolution. PUF proteins can be fused to translation initiation factors (e.g., EIF4G) to promote protein production. However, engineered RNA binding proteins require extensive engineering for each target RNA sequence, and in the case of PUF proteins, cannot recognize cytosine RNA bases thus limiting their applicability. PUF protein fusions are also large and have exhibited high affinities for target RNA sites, which may confine their use to specific mRNA regions (e.g., the 3’UTR, where helicase activity and ribosome translocation are largely absent). More problematic with this methodology is the act of expression itself, whereby the introduction of PUF/translation initiation factor fusion proteins likely disrupts the stoichiometry of translation machinery maintained by the cell.

The most widely accepted view on translation initiation in mammalian cells starts with the binding of the 5’ methyl-7 guanosine (m7G) cap structure by Eukaryotic Initiation Factor 4E (EIF4E), which results in the nucleation of translational pre-initiation complexes on the adjacent 5’ untranslated region (5’UTR) of mRNA. The bound pre-initiation complexes then scan the 5’UTR unidirectionally (5’ to 3’) for suitable start codons (e.g., “AUG”) to prime and initiate translation. The 5’ m7G cap is an evolutionarily conserved modification of eukaryotic mRNA, and serves as a unique molecular module that recruits cellular proteins and mediates cap-related biological functions such as pre-mRNA processing, nuclear export, and cap-dependent protein synthesis.

Provided herein are compositions and methods for enhancing protein production by recruiting an m7G cap to an mRNA using cap-conjugated oligonucleotides.

In some aspects, provided herein are cap-conjugated oligonucleotides comprising an m7G cap or an analog thereof conjugated to an oligonucleotide, wherein the oligonucleotide is capable of specifically hybridizing with a target sequence in an RNA molecule (e.g., an mRNA).

In some embodiments, upon hybridization between the oligonucleotide and the target sequence, the m7G cap associated with the oligonucleotide is brought closer to a desired start codon in the target mRNA as compared to the endogenous m7G cap of the target mRNA.

Also provided are methods of regulating translation of an mRNA in a cell, the method comprising contacting the cell with a cap-conjugated oligonucleotide comprising an m7G cap or an analog thereof conjugated to an oligonucleotide, wherein the oligonucleotide comprises a sequence capable of specifically hybridizing with a target sequence in an RNA molecule.

Each strand of DNA or RNA has a 5’ end and a 3’ end, corresponding to the carbon position on the deoxyribose (or ribose) ring.“Upstream” as described herein can mean toward the 5’ end of an RNA molecule and“downstream” as described herein can mean towards the 3’ end of an RNA molecule. A“start codon” as described herein can refer to the first codon of an open reading frame on a messenger RNA transcript translated by a ribosome. The most common start codon is AUG. Alternative start codons from both prokaryotes and eukaryotes such as, but not limited to, GUG, UUG, AUU, and CUG are also provided.

As used in the description of the invention and the appended claims, the singular forms“a,”“an” and“the” are intended to include the plural forms as well, unless the context clearly indicates otherwise.

The term“about,” as used herein when referring to a measurable value such as an amount or concentration and the like, is meant to encompass variations of 20%, 10%, 5%, 1 %, 0.5%, or even 0.1 % of the specified amount.

The terms“acceptable,”“effective,”“efficient” or“sufficient” when used to describe the selection of any components, ranges, dose forms, etc. disclosed herein intend that said component, range, dose form, etc. is suitable for the disclosed purpose. Also as used herein,“and/or” refers to and encompasses any and all possible combinations of one or more of the associated listed items, as well as the lack of

combinations when interpreted in the alternative (“or”).

As used herein, the term“comprising” is intended to mean that the compositions and methods include the recited elements, but do not exclude others. As used herein, the transitional phrase“consisting essentially of (and grammatical variants) is to be interpreted as encompassing the recited materials or steps and those that do not materially affect the basic and novel characteristic(s) of the recited embodiment. Thus, the term“consisting essentially of as used herein should not be interpreted as equivalent to“comprising.”“Consisting of shall mean excluding more than trace elements of other ingredients and substantial method steps for administering the compositions disclosed herein. Aspects defined by each of these transition terms are within the scope of the present disclosure.

As used herein, the term“functional” may be used to modify any molecule, biological, or cellular material to intend that it accomplishes a particular, specified effect.

The term“target sequence” can refer to a nucleic acid sequence present in an RNA molecule to which a cap-conjugated oligonucleotide can hybridize, provided sufficient conditions for hybridization exist. Hybridization between the cap-conjugated oligonucleotide and the target sequence can, for example, be based on Watson-Crick base pairing rules, which enables programmability in the oligonucleotide sequence. The oligonucleotide sequence can be designed, for instance, to hybridize with any target sequence.

“Binding” as used herein can refer to a non-covalent interaction between

macromolecules (e.g., between a protein and a nucleic acid). While in a state of non-covalent interaction, the macromolecules are said to be“associated” or“interacting” or“binding”

(e.g., when a molecule X is said to interact with a molecule Y, it means that the molecule X binds to molecule Y in a non-covalent manner). Binding interactions are generally characterized by a dissociation constant (Kd) of less than 10 6 M, less than 10 7 M, less than 10 8 M, less than 10 9 M, less than 10 10 M, less than 10 11 M, less than 10 12 M, less than 10 13 M, less than 10 14 M, or less than 10 15 M. Kd is dependent on environmental conditions, e.g., pH and temperature, as is known by those in the art.“Affinity” can refer to the strength of binding, and increased binding affinity is correlated with a lower Kd.

The terms“hybridizing” or“hybridize” can refer to the pairing of substantially complementary or complementary nucleic acid sequences within two different molecules. Pairing can be achieved by any process in which a nucleic acid sequence joins with a substantially or fully complementary sequence through base pairing to form a hybridization complex. For purposes of hybridization, two nucleic acid sequences or segments of sequences are“substantially complementary” if at least 80% of their individual bases are

complementary to one another.

As used herein,“complementary” can mean that two nucleic acid sequences have at least 50% sequence identity. Preferably, the two nucleic acid sequences have at least 60%, 70%, 80%, 90%, 95%, 96%, 97%, 98%, 99%, or 100% of sequence identity.

“Complementary” also means that two nucleic acid sequences can hybridize under low, middle, and/or high stringency condition(s).

As used herein,“substantially complementary” means that two nucleic acid sequences have at least 90% sequence identity. Preferably, the two nucleic acid sequences have at least 95%, 96%, 97%, 98%, 99%, or 100% of sequence identity.“Substantially complementary” can also mean that two nucleic acid sequences can hybridize under high stringency condition(s).

Low stringency hybridization can refer to conditions equivalent to hybridization in 10% formamide, 5x Denhardt’s solution, 6x SSPE, 0.2% SDS at 22°C, followed by washing in lx SSPE, 0.2% SDS, at 37°C. Denhardt’s solution contains 1% Ficoll, 1%

polyvinylpyrolidone, and 1% bovine serum albumin (BSA). 20x SSPE (sodium chloride, sodium phosphate, ethylene diamide tetraacetic acid (EDTA)) contains 3M sodium chloride, 0.2M sodium phosphate, and 0.025 M (EDTA). Other suitable moderate stringency and high stringency hybridization buffers and conditions are well known to those of skill in the art.

As used herein,“contacting” a cell with a nucleic acid molecule can be allowing the nucleic acid molecule to be in sufficient proximity with the cell such that the nucleic acid molecule can be introduced into the cell.

“Nucleic acids” may be naturally occurring nucleic acids such as DNA and RNA, or artificial nucleic acids including peptide nucleic acid (PNA), morpholino, locked nucleic acid (LNA), glycol nucleic acid (GNA), and threose nucleic acid (TNA). Both single-stranded and double-stranded nucleic acids are included.

As used herein,“conjugate” can refer to linking or connecting two or more molecules, such as nucleic acids, via a covalent link.

The term“cell” as used herein may refer to either a prokaryotic or eukaryotic cell, optionally obtained from a subject or a commercially available source.

The term“encode” as it is applied to nucleic acid sequences refers to a polynucleotide which is said to“encode” a polypeptide, an mRNA, or an effector RNA if, in its native state or when manipulated by methods well known to those skilled in the art, can be transcribed and/or translated to produce the effector RNA, the mRNA, or an mRNA that can for the polypeptide and/or a fragment thereof. The antisense strand is the complement of such a nucleic acid, and the encoding sequence can be deduced therefrom.

As used herein, the term“expression” or“gene expression” refers to the process by which polynucleotides are transcribed into mRNA and/or the process by which the transcribed mRNA is subsequently translated into peptides, polypeptides, or proteins. If the polynucleotide is derived from genomic DNA, expression may include splicing of the mRNA in a eukaryotic cell. The expression level of a gene may be determined by measuring the amount of mRNA or protein in a cell or tissue sample; further, the expression level of multiple genes can be determined to establish an expression profile for a particular sample.

As used herein,“contacting” a cell with a nucleic acid molecule can include allowing the nucleic acid molecule to be in sufficient proximity with the cell such that the nucleic acid molecule can be introduced into the cell.

A“promoter” can be a region of DNA that leads to initiation of transcription of a gene.

I. m7G cap

An m7G cap, or 7-methylguanosine cap, includes a guanine nucleotide methylated on the 7 position. In eukaryotes, m7G caps can be found on the 5’ end of an mRNA molecule, which is connected with the mRNA via a 5’ to 5’ triphosphate linkage. m7G caps disclosed herein can further include a second nucleotide, which is linked to the guanine nucleotide via 1, 2, 3, or 4 phosphate groups, referred to as the di -nucleotide m7G cap. The second nucleotide can be an adenosine, guanosine, cytidine, thymidine, or uridine, and can be 2’-0- methylated.

Variants of the m7G cap can include modifications at various positions. For example, the 7 position of the guanine nucleotide can be a functional group other than a methyl that can enhance EIF4E association (e.g. (4-Chlorophenyl-ethyl)- ; (4-Fluorophenyl-ethyl)-; See Cai et al. (1999) Biochemistry, 38: 8538-8547, Chen et al. (2012) Journal of Medicinal

Chemistry, 55:3837-3851, Soukarieh et al. (2016) European Journal of Medicinal Chemistry, 124: 200-217). The 3’ hydroxyl group in the guanine nucleotide can be methylated to prevent further conjugation. The 3’ hydroxyl group can also be substituted with other functional groups to prevent further conjugation (e.g. -O-Methyl). The phosphodiester bonds in the phosphate groups of di-nucleotide caps can be substituted with phosphorothioate bonds. In some instances, the m7G cap or variants thereof have the following structure (Structure A):

where a’ can be methyl or a functional group configured to enhance association with an EIF4E protein (e.g. (4-Chlorophenyl-ethyl)- ; (4-Fluorophenyl-ethyl)-), r’ can be methyl or a functional group configured to prevent further extension (e.g. -O-Methyl), b’ can be oxygen, sulfur or boron, c’ can be a nitrogenous base (e.g., adenine, guanine, cytosine, thymine, or uracil), and nl can be equal to or fewer than 4. In some instances, the m7G cap or variants thereof have the following structure (Structure B):

where a’ can be methyl or a functional group configured to enhance association with an EIF4E protein e.g. (4-Chlorophenyl-ethyl)-; (4-Fluorophenyl-ethyl)), b’ can be oxygen, sulfur or boron, and nl can be equal to or fewer than 4.

Also contemplated herein are analogs of the m7G cap. For example, standard cap analog m7G(5’)pppG can be conjugated to the oligonucleotide of the present disclosure and simulate the m7G cap structure. Standard cap analogs can be conjugated to the

oligonucleotide in the forward (e.g., [m7G(5’)pppG(pN)]) or the reverse orientation (e.g., [G(5’)pppm7G(pN)]). The cap analog ARCA (anti-reverse cap analog), where one of the 3’ OH groups is eliminated from the cap analog and is substituted with -OCH3. An exemplary structure of ARCA (m7(3’-0-methyl)-G(5’)ppp(5’)G) is shown below (Structure C):

Additional cap analogs contemplated herein also include unmethylated cap analogs (e.g., GpppG), trimethylated cap analogs (e.g., rm 2 2 7 GP3G), and m2 7 3' 0 GP3(2OMe)ApG.

The m7G cap and variants and analogs thereof as disclosed herein may include chemical modifications relative to the naturally occurring m7G cap. For example, chemical modifications that can reduce the sensitivity of the m7G cap to cellular decapping enzymes are useful for the present disclosure. Chemical modifications at either the 2’ or 3’ OH group are contemplated. Suitable chemical modifications include those with 1,2-dithiodiphosphate (See, e.g. Strenkowska et al., Nucleic Acids Res. 44(20):9578-9590 (2016)), phosphate- modified cap analogues (e.g. those described in Walczak et al, Chem Sci. 8(l):260-267 (2017)), as well as those described in Basolo et al, Eur J Endocrinol., 145(5):599-604 (2001), and Borghardt et al., Can Respir J. 2018 Jun 19; 2018:2732017.

II. Cap-conjugated oligonucleotides

The present disclosure provides cap-conjugated oligonucleotides comprising an m7G cap or a variant or analog thereof conjugated to an oligonucleotide, wherein the

oligonucleotide is capable of specifically hybridizing with a target sequence in an RNA molecule (e.g., an mRNA).

The mRNA can include an endogenous m7G cap, and the target sequence can be downstream of the endogenous m7G cap. The mRNA can include one or more start codons, and any one of the one or more start codons can be chosen as the desired start codon. The 5’ end of the target sequence can either be upstream of the first nucleotide of the desired start codon, or downstream of the last nucleotide of the desired start codon. The 5’ end of the target sequence can be located between 1 to 50 nucleotides (e.g., about 2, 3, 4, 5, 6, 7, 8, 9,

10, 11, 12, 13, 14, 15, 16, 17, 18, 19, 20, 21, 22, 23, 24, 25, 26, 27, 28, 29, 30, 31, 32, 33, 34,

35, 36, 37, 38, 39, 40, 41, 42, 43, 44, 45, 46, 47, 48, or 49 nucleotides) upstream of the first nucleotide of the desired start codon. In some instances, the target sequence encompasses the desired start codon. The 5’ end of the target sequence can alternatively be located between 1 to 50 nucleotides (e.g., about 2, 3, 4, 5, 6, 7, 8, 9, 10, 11, 12, 13, 14, 15, 16, 17, 18, 19, 20, 21, 22, 23, 24, 25, 26, 27, 28, 29, 30, 31, 32, 33, 34, 35, 36, 37, 38, 39, 40, 41, 42, 43, 44, 45, 46,

47, 48, or 49 nucleotides) downstream of the last nucleotide in the desired start codon.

The oligonucleotide is capable of hybridizing with a target sequence in an RNA (e.g., an mRNA). The oligonucleotide can include a sequence that is at least 80% (e.g., at least 81%, 82%, 83%, 84%, 85%, 86%, 87%, 88%, 89%, 90%, 91%, 92%, 93%, 94%, 95%, 96%, 97%, 98%, or 99%) complementary to the target sequence. The oligonucleotide can include 5 to 30 nucleotides (e.g. 8 to 27, 11 to 24, 14 to 21, or 16 to 19 nucleotides).

Upon hybridization between the cap-conjugated oligonucleotide and the target sequence, the m7G cap or a variant or analog thereof in the cap-conjugated oligonucleotide can be recruited to the vicinity of the desired start codon, and closer in proximity to the desired start codon than the endogenous m7G cap of the mRNA. The m7G cap or a variant or analog thereof of the bound cap-conjugated oligonucleotide can subsequently recruit translation initiation factors (e.g., EIF4E) and initiate protein translation from the desired start codon. Such recruitment of the translation initiation factors to a start codon via a cap- conjugated oligonucleotide can enhance protein translation, as compared to protein translation initiated by the endogenous m7G cap of the mRNA.

An exemplary structure (Structure D) of the cap-conjugated oligonucleotide is shown below:

where a’ can be methyl or a functional group configured to enhance association with an EIF4E protein (e.g. 4-Chlorophenyl-ethyl)- ; (4-Fluorophenyl-ethyl)-), r’ can be methyl or a functional group configured to prevent further extension (e.g. -O-Methyl), b’ can be oxygen, sulfur, or boron, c’ can be a nitrogenous base (e.g. adenine, guanine, cytosine, thymine or uracil), and nl can be equal to or fewer than 4. Additionally, d’ can be a linker of variable length (e.g., a polymeric linker (e.g. a biocompatible polymeric linker, such as PEG)), and e’ can be an oligonucleotide capable of hybridizing with a target sequence in an RNA (e.g., mRNA). n2 can be between 2 and 30 units and n3 can be between 5 and 25 units e’ can include modifications that reduce sensitivity to cellular nucleases and increase overall stability, such as locked nucleic acid (LNA), 2’ -modifications, and phosphorothioate backbone modifications. For example, e’ can include (2’O-methyl) nucleic acids (10 < n3 < 25 units), LNAs (5 < n3 < 15 units), or an intermediate combination of both (n3<25 units).

As shown in Structure D, the m7G cap or a variant or analog thereof is conjugated to e’ via a linker d’. However, the m7G cap or a variant or analog thereof can be conjugated to e’ at either the 5’ end, the 3’ end, or at any nucleotides between the 5’ and 3’ ends. In some embodiments, two or more (e.g., 2, 3, 4, or 5) m7G caps are conjugated to the same oligonucleotide. In some embodiments, two m7G caps are conjugated to the same oligonucleotide, with one on the 5’ end and the other on the 3’ end.

Another exemplary structure (Structure E) of the cap-conjugated oligonucleotide is shown below:

where a’ can be methyl or a functional group configured to enhance association with an EIF4E protein, b’ can be oxygen, sulfur or boron, and nl can be equal to or fewer than 4. c’ can be a linker of variable length (e.g., a polymeric linker (e.g. a biocompatible polymeric linker, such as PEG)), and d’ can be an oligonucleotide capable of hybridizing with a target sequence in an RNA (e.g., mRNA). n2 can be between 2 and 30 units and n3 can be between 5 and 25 units d’ can include modifications that reduce sensitivity to cellular nucleases and increase overall stability, such as locked nucleic acid (LNA), 2’-modifications, and phosphorothioate backbone modifications. For example, e’ can include (2’O-methyl) nucleic acids (10 < n3 < 25 units), LNAs (5 < n3 < 15 units), or an intermediate combination of both (n3<25 units). As shown in Structure E, the m7G cap or a variant or analog thereof is conjugated to d’ via a linker c’. However, the m7G cap or a variant or analog thereof can be conjugated to d’ at either the 5’ end, the 3’ end, or at any nucleotides between the 5’ and 3’ ends.

A further exemplary structure (Structure F) of the cap-conjugated oligonucleotide is shown below:

where b’ can be a sequence of nitrogenous bases, e.g., adenine, guanine, cytosine, thymine, and uracil, which defines a polymer of nucleic acids that are complementary in sequence to regions of messenger RNA in close proximity to start codons.

Modifications

A cap-conjugated oligonucleotide of the present disclosure can include one or more modifications. Suitable modifications that can sequence specifically recruit a Cap analog to a target RNA molecule are contemplated herein (e.g., LNA, BN A, PNA, GNA, or morpholino nucleic acid). Suitable modifications also include those that can enhance the stability of the oligonucleotide and or affinity for a target RNA sequence. An oligonucleotide of the present disclosure can include one or more modifications in the backbone. Non-limiting examples of backbone modifications include: 2’ methoxy (2’OMe), 2’ fluorine (2’fluoro), 2’-0-methoxy- ethyl (MOE), locked nucleic acids (LNA), unlocked nucleic acids (UNA), bridged nucleic acids, 2’deoxynucleic acids (DNA), and peptide nucleic acids (PNA). Alternatively or additionally, an oligonucleotide can include at least one base modification. Non-limiting examples of base modifications include: 2-aminopurine, inosine, thymine, 2,6-diaminopurine, 2-pyrimidinone, and 5-methyl cytosine. In some instances, an RNA fragment comprises at least one phosphorothioate linkage.

Modifications in the oligonucleotides can be used to, e.g., enhance stability, reduce the likelihood or degree of innate immune response, and improve binding capacity. By way of illustration of various types of modifications, modifications can include one or more nucleotides modified at the 2’ position of the sugar, such as but not limited to, a 2’-O-alkyl,

2’ -O-alky 1-O-alkyl, or 2’-fluoro-modified nucleotide. DNA (2’deoxy-) nucleotide substitutions are also contemplated. Non-limiting examples of RNA modifications also include 2’-fluoro, 2’-amino, 2’ O-methyl modifications on the ribose of pyrimidines, and basic residues or an inverted base at the 3’ end of the RNA. Such modifications can be incorporated into oligonucleotides, and these oligonucleotides have been shown to have a higher T m (e.g., higher target binding affinity) than 2’-deoxy oligonucleotides against a given target.

An oligonucleotide according to any of the embodiments described herein can include, for example, a modification that increases resistance to nuclease digestion as compared to the native nucleic acid. In some instances, the modified nucleic acid comprises a modified backbone selected from, for example, phosphorothioates, phosphotriesters, methyl phosphonates, short chain alkyl or cycloalkyl intersugar linkages, and short chain

heteroatomic or heterocyclic intersugar linkages. The nucleic acid can have a

phosphorothioate backbone or a heteroatom backbone, e.g., CH2-NH-O-CH2, CH,-N(CH3)- O-CH2 (known as a methylene(methylimino) or MMI backbone), CH2-O-N (CH3)-CH2, CH2 -N (CH3)-N (CH 3 )-CH 2 and O-N (CH3)-CH2 -CH2 backbones; amide backbones (see De Mesmaeker et al. (1995) Acc. Chem. Res., 28( 9):366-374); morpholino backbone structures (see Summerton and Weller, U.S. Patent No. 5,034,506); peptide nucleic acid (PNA) backbone (wherein the phosphodiester backbone of the oligonucleotide is replaced with a polyamide backbone, the nucleotides being bound directly or indirectly to the aza nitrogen atoms of the polyamide backbone, see Nielsen et al. (1991) Science, 254( 5037): 1497-1500). Phosphorus-containing linkages include, but are not limited to, phosphorothioates, chiral phosphorothioates, phosphorodithioates, phosphotriesters, aminoalkylphosphotriesters, methyl and other alkyl phosphonates including 3’alkylene phosphonates and chiral phosphonates, phosphinates, phosphorami dates including 3’-amino phosphoramidate and aminoalkylphosphoramidates, thionophosphoramidates, thionoalkylphosphonates, thionoalkylphosphotri esters, and boranophosphates having normal 3’-5’ linkages, 2’-5’ linked analogs of these, and those having inverted polarity wherein the adjacent pairs of nucleoside units are linked 3’-5’ to 5’-3’ or 2’-5’ to 5’-2’; see, e.g., U.S. Patent Nos.

3,687,808; 4,469,863; 4,476,301; 5,023,243; 5,177, 196; 5,188,897; 5,264,423; 5,276,019; 5,278,302; 5,286,717; 5,321,131; 5,399,676; 5,405,939; 5,453,496; 5,455, 233; 5,466,677; 5,476,925; 5,519,126; 5,536,821; 5,541,306; 5,550,111; 5,563, 253; 5,571,799; 5,587,361; and 5,625,050.

Morpholino-based oligomeric compounds are described in Braasch et al. (2002) Biochem., 47(14):4503-4510; Genesis, Volume 30, Issue 3, (2001) Wiley Online Library; Heasman (2002) Dev. Biol., 243( 2):209-214; Nasevicius et al. (2000) Nat. Genet., 26( 2):216- 220; Lacerra et al. (2000) Proc. Natl. Acad. Sci. USA, 97( 17 ): 9591 -9591 ; and U.S. Patent No. 5,034,506. Cyclohexenyl nucleic acid oligonucleotide mimetics are described in Wang et al. (2000 ) J Am. Chem. So , 722(36):8595-8602.

An oligonucleotide described herein can include a backbone that does not include a phosphorus atom, e.g., backbones that are formed by short chain alkyl or cycloalkyl intemucleoside linkages, mixed heteroatom and alkyl or cycloalkyl intemucleoside linkages, or one or more short chain heteroatomic or heterocyclic intemucleoside linkages. These include those having morpholino linkages (formed in part from the sugar portion of a nucleoside); siloxane backbones; sulfide, sulfoxide and sulfone backbones; formacetyl and thioformacetyl backbones; methylene formacetyl and thioformacetyl backbones; alkene containing backbones; sulfamate backbones; methyleneimino and methylenehydrazino backbones; sulfonate and sulfonamide backbones; amide backbones; and others having mixed N, O, S, and CTh component parts; see, e.g., US Patent Nos. 5,034,506; 5,166,315;

5,185,444; 5,214,134; 5,216,141; 5,235,033; 5,264, 562; 5, 264,564; 5,405,938; 5,434,257; 5,466,677; 5,470,967; 5,489,677; 5,541,307; 5,561,225; 5,596, 086; 5,602,240; 5,610,289; 5,602,240; 5,608,046; 5,610,289; 5,618,704; 5,623, 070; 5,663,312; 5,633,360; 5,677,437; and 5,677,439.

An oligonucleotide as described herein can include one or more modifications selected from the group consisting of: pseudouridine, N 1 -methyl pseudouridine and 5- methoxyuridine. For example, one or more N 1 -methyl pseudouridines can be incorporated into the RNA fragment to provide enhanced RNA stability and reduced immunogenicity in animal cells, such as mammalian cells (e.g., cells of human and mice). N 1 -methyl pseudouridine modifications can also be incorporated in combination with one or more 5-methylcytidines.

5’-Methylcytidine-5’ -triphosphate (5-methyl-CTP), N6-methyl-ATP, as well as pseudo-UTP and 2-thio-UTP, have also been shown to reduce innate immune stimulation in culture and in vivo as illustrated in Kormann et al. (2011) Nat. Biotechnol., 29: 154-157 and Warren et al. (2010) Cell Stem Cell, 7(5):618-630. An oligonucleotide can incorporate modifications (e.g. pseudo-UTP) designed to bypass innate antiviral responses. See, e.g., Warren et al. (2010) Cell Stem Cell, 7(5):618-630.

Mimetics

An oligonucleotide described herein can be a nucleic acid mimetic. The term “mimetic” as it is applied to polynucleotides can include polynucleotides wherein only the furanose ring or both the furanose ring and the intemucleotide linkage are replaced with non- furanose groups. Replacement of only the furanose ring is also referred to in the art as being a sugar surrogate. The heterocyclic base moiety or a modified heterocyclic base moiety is maintained for hybridization with an appropriate target nucleic acid. One such nucleic acid, a polynucleotide mimetic that has been shown to have excellent hybridization properties, is referred to as a peptide nucleic acid (PNA). In PNA, the sugar-backbone of a polynucleotide is replaced with an amide containing backbone, in particular an aminoethylglycine backbone. The nucleotides are retained and are bound directly or indirectly to aza nitrogen atoms of the amide portion of the backbone. Representative U.S. patents that describe the preparation of PNA compounds include, but are not limited to: U.S. Patent Nos. 5,539,082; 5,714,331; and 5,719,262.

An oligonucleotide described herein can be a polynucleotide mimetic based on linked morpholino units (morpholino nucleic acid) having heterocyclic bases attached to the morpholino ring. A number of linking groups have been reported that link the morpholino monomeric units in a morpholino nucleic acid. One class of linking groups has been selected to give a non-ionic oligomeric compound. Morpholino-based polynucleotides are nonionic mimics of oligonucleotides, which are less likely to form undesired interactions with cellular proteins (Braasch et al. (2002 ) Biochemistry, 47(14): 4503-4510). Morpholino-based polynucleotides are disclosed in U.S. Patent No. 5,034,506. A variety of compounds within the morpholino class of polynucleotides have been prepared, having a variety of different linking groups joining the monomeric subunits.

An oligonucleotide described herein can be a polynucleotide mimetic referred to as cyclohexenyl nucleic acid (GeNA), where the furanose ring normally present in a DNA/RNA molecule is replaced with a cydohexenyl ring. GeNA DMT protected phosphoramidite monomers have been prepared and used for oligomeric compound synthesis following classical phosphoramidite chemistry. Fully modified GeNA oligonucleotides having specific positions modified with GeNA have been prepared and studied (see Wang et al. (2000) J. Am. Chem. Soc., 722(36):8595-8602).

An oligonucleotide described herein can be a Locked Nucleic Acid (LNA), in which the 2’-hydroxyl group is linked to the 4’ carbon atom of the sugar ring, forming a 2’-C,4’-C- oxymethylene linkage, thereby forming a bicyclic sugar moiety. The linkage can be a methylene (-CH2-) n group bridging the 2’ oxygen atom and the 4’ carbon atom wherein n is 1 or 2 (Singh et al. (1998) Chem. Commun., 4:455-456). LNA and LNA analogs display very high duplex thermal stabilities with complementary DNA and RNA (T m = +3 to +10°C), stability towards 3’-exonucleolytic degradation, and good solubility properties. Potent and nontoxic antisense oligonucleotides containing LNAs are described in e.g., Wahlestedt et al. (2000) Proc. Natl. Acad. Sci. U.S.A, 97( 10):5633-5638. The synthesis and preparation of the LNA monomers adenine, cytosine, guanine, 5 -methyl-cytosine, thymine, and uracil, along with their oligomerization, and nucleic acid recognition properties have been described (Koshkin et al. (1998) Tetrahedron, 54( 14):3607-3630). LNAs and preparation thereof are also described in WO 98/39352 and WO 99/14226.

Modified sugar moieties

An oligonucleotide described herein can include one or more substituted sugar moieties including, for example, a sugar substituent group selected from: OH; F; 0-, S-, or N- alkyl; 0-, S-, or N-alkenyl; 0-, S-or N-alkynyl; and O-alkyl-O-alkyl, wherein the alkyl, alkenyl and alkynyl may be substituted or unsubstituted Cl to CIO alkyl or C2 to CIO alkenyl and alkynyl. Particularly suitable are 0((CH2)n0) m CH3, 0(CH2)n0CH3, 0(CH z )nNH2, 0(CH2)CH3, 0(CH 2 )n0NH 2 , and 0(CH2)n0N((CH2)nCH3)2, where n and m are from 1 to about 10. Other oligonucleotides include a suitable sugar substituent group selected from: Cl to CIO lower alkyl, substituted lower alkyl, alkenyl, alkynyl, alkaryl, aralkyl, O-alkaryl or O- ar alkyl, SH, SCH 3 , OCN, Cl, Br, CN, CF 3 , OCF 3 , SOCH3, SO2CH3, ONO2, NO2, N 3 , NH 2 , heterocycloalkyl, heterocycloalkaryl, aminoalkylamino, polyalkylamino, substituted silyl, an RNA cleaving group, a reporter group, an intercalator, a group for improving the

pharmacokinetic properties of an oligonucleotide, a group for improving the

pharmacodynamic properties of an oligonucleotide, and other substituents having similar properties. A suitable modification includes 2’-methoxy ethoxy 2'-0-CH2-CH20CH3, also known as -2’-0-(2-methoxy ethyl) or 2’-MOE) (Martin et al. (1995) Helv. Chim. Acta, 7<S'(2):486-504) e.g., an alkoxyalkoxy group. A further suitable modification includes 2’- dimethylaminooxyethoxy, e.g., a 0(CH2)20N(CH3)2 group, also known as 2’-DMAOE, as described in examples herein below, and 2’- dimethylaminoethoxy ethoxy (also known in the art as 2'-0-dimethyl-amino-ethoxy-ethyl or 2’- DMAEOE), e.g., 2’-0-CH2-0-CH2-N(CH3)2.

Other suitable sugar substituent groups include methoxy (-O-CH3), aminopropoxy (- O-CH2CH2CH2NH2), allyl (-CH 2 -CH=CH 2 ), -O-allyl (-0-CH 2 -CH=CH 2 ) and fluoro (F). 2’- sugar substituent groups may be in the arabino (up) position or ribo (down) position. A suitable 2’-arabino modification is 2’-F. Similar modifications may also be made at other positions on the oligonucleotide, particularly the 3’ position of the sugar on the 3’ terminal nucleotide or in 2’ -5’ linked oligonucleotides and the 5’ position of 5’ terminal nucleotide. Oligomeric compounds may also have sugar mimetics such as cyclobutyl moieties in place of the pentofuranosyl sugar. Base Modifications and Substitutions

An RNA fragment according to any of the embodiments described herein can include, additionally or alternatively, nucleobase (often referred to in the art simply as“base”) modifications or substitutions. As used herein,“unmodified” or“natural” nucleobases include adenine (A), guanine (G), thymine (T), cytosine (C) and uracil (U). Modified nucleobases include nucleobases found only infrequently or transiently in natural nucleic acids, e.g., hypoxanthine, 6-methyladenine, 5-Me pyrimidines, particularly 5-methylcytosine (also referred to as 5-methyl-2' deoxy cytosine and often referred to in the art as 5-Me-C), 5- hydroxymethylcytosine (HMC), glycosyl HMC and gentobiosyl HMC, as well as synthetic nucleobases, e.g., 2-aminoadenine, 2-(methylamino)adenine, 2-(imidazolylalkyl)adenine, 2- (aminoalklyamino)adenine or other heterosubstituted alkyladenines, 2-thiouracil, 2- thiothymine, 5-bromouracil, 5-hydroxymethyluracil, 8-azaguanine, 7-deazaguanine, N6 (6- aminohexyl)adenine and 2,6-diaminopurine (see, Komberg et al. (1980) DNA Replication (2 nd ed.) (pp. 75-77). San Francisco, CA: W. H. Freeman & Co.; Gebeyehu et al. (1987) Nucl. Acids Res., 75(l l):4513-4534). A“universal” base known in the art, e.g. inosine, can also be included. 5-Me-C substitutions have been shown to increase nucleic acid duplex stability by 0.6-1.2 °C. (Sanghvi (1993 ). Antisense Research and Applications, (pp. 276-278). Crooke, S. T. and Lebleu, B., (Eds.), Boca Raton, FL: CRC Press) and are embodiments of base substitutions.

Modified nucleobases include other synthetic and natural nucleobases such as 5- methylcytosine (5-me-C), 5-hydroxymethyl cytosine, xanthine, hypoxanthine, 2- aminoadenine, 6-methyl and other alkyl derivatives of adenine and guanine, 2-propyl and other alkyl derivatives of adenine and guanine, 2-thiouracil, 2-thiothymine and 2- thiocytosine, 5-halouracil and cytosine, 5-propynyl uracil and cytosine, 6-azo uracil, cytosine and thymine, 5-uracil (pseudo-uracil), 4-thiouracil, 8-halo, 8-amino, 8-thiol, 8-thioalkyl, 8- hydroxyl and other a-substituted adenines and guanines, 5-halo particularly 5-bromo, 5- trifluoromethyl and other 5-substituted uracils and cytosines, 7-methylquanine and 7- methyladenine, 8-azaguanine and 8-azaadenine, 7-deazaguanine and 7-deazaadenine and 3- deazaguanine and 3-deazaadenine.

Further, nucleobases include those disclosed in U.S. Patent No. 3,687,808, those disclosed in Kroschwitz (Ed.) (1990). The Concise Encyclopedia of Polymer Science and Engineering, (pp. 858-859). Hoboken, N. J.: John Wiley & Sons, those disclosed by Englisch et al. (1991) Angewandte Chemie International Edition, 30(G):G 13-722. and those disclosed by Sanghvi (1993) Chapter 15, Antisense Research and Applications , (pp. 289-302), Crooke, S. T. and Lebleu, B. (Eds), Boca Raton, FL: CRC Press. Certain types of these nucleobases are particularly useful for increasing the binding affinity of the oligonucleotides of the disclosure. These include 5-substituted pyrimidines, 6-azapyrimidines and N-2, N-6 and -0-6 substituted purines, including 2-aminopropyladenine, 5-propynyluracil and 5- propynylcytosine. 5-methylcytosine substitutions have been shown to increase nucleic acid duplex stability by 0.6-1.2 °C (Sanghvi (1993 ) Antisense Research and Applications, (pp. 276-278). Crooke and Lebleu, (Eds.), Boca Raton, FL: CRC Press) and are embodiments of base substitutions, even more particularly when combined with 2’-0-methoxyethyl sugar modifications.

An oligonucleotide according to any of the embodiments described herein comprising nucleobase modifications or substitutions may not have all positions uniformly modified. For example, an oligonucleotide may have a modification incorporated in a single nucleoside.

In some instances, the oligonucleotide includes a sequence of 5 to 15 (e.g., 6, 7, 8, 9, 10, 11, 12, 13, or 14) LNAs. In some instances, the oligonucleotide includes a sequence of 10 to 25 (e.g., 11, 12, 13, 14, 15, 16, 17, 18, 19, 20, 21, 22, 23, or 24) nucleotides having modifications at the 2’ position of the sugar (e.g., 2’ O-methyl).

Cap conjugation

The m7G cap or a variant or analog thereof can be conjugated to the oligonucleotide via a linker. Any suitable linkers known in the art are included. Suitable linkers can include those that possess sufficient stability in vivo. Alkyl linkers such as -NH(CH2) n C(0)-, wherein n = 2-20 can be used. These alkyl linkers may further be substituted by any non- sterically hindering group such as lower alkyl (e.g., C1-C6) lower acyl, halogen (e.g., Cl, Br), CN, NH2, phenyl, etc. In another example, polyethylene glycol (PEG) can be used. About 10 to about 30 PEG subunits (e.g., about 12 to about 28, about 15 to about 25, or about 20 subunits) can be used for the conjugation. The type and length of the linker can be modified to adjust the editing window.

The cap-conjugated oligonucleotide can be chemically synthesized, such as through solid phase synthesis. An example of capped RNA prepared by solid-phase synthesis is described in Kadokura et al. Tetrahedron Lett. 2001; 42:8853-8856. Briefly, a 2,2,7- trimethylguanosine (TMG)-capped trinucleotide block of U1 snRNA with the structure m3 2 2 7 G 5’ pppAm 2’ Um 2’ A can be prepared, starting from a 5’-phosphorylated trimer synthesized by standard phosphoramidite chemistry. TMG-capping reaction can be carried out upon deprotection of all base-labile groups. Utilization of a novel, acid labile linker to the solid support can allow for subsequent release of the RNA. As another example, an RNA bearing a 5’-terminal TMG-capped pyrophosphate linkage on solid support is described in Ohkubo et al. Bioorg Med Chem. 2009;17:4819-4824.

The m7G cap or a variant or analog thereof can be conjugated (e.g., via a linker) to the 5’ end or the 3’ end of the oligonucleotide, or can be conjugated to a nucleotide between the 5’ and the 3’ ends of the oligonucleotide.

III. Pharmaceutical compositions and administration

Some aspects of the present disclosure provide pharmaceutical preparations or compositions comprising the cap-conjugated oligonucleotides described herein.

Pharmaceutical compositions typically include a pharmaceutically acceptable carrier. As used herein the language“pharmaceutically acceptable carrier” includes saline, solvents, dispersion media, coatings, antibacterial and antifungal agents, isotonic and absorption delaying agents, and the like, compatible with pharmaceutical administration. Pharmaceutical compositions are typically formulated to be compatible with its intended route of administration. Examples of routes of administration include parenteral, e.g., intravenous, intradermal, subcutaneous, oral (e.g., inhalation), transdermal (topical), transmucosal, and rectal administration. Methods of formulating suitable pharmaceutical compositions are known in the art, see, e.g., Remington : The Science and Practice of Pharmacy, 21st ed.,

2005; and the books in the series Drugs and the Pharmaceutical Sciences: a Series of Textbooks and Monographs (Dekker, NY).

Therapeutic compounds that are or include nucleic acids can be administered by any method suitable for administration of nucleic acid agents. These methods include gene guns, bio injectors, and skin patches as well as needle-free methods. Additionally, intranasal delivery is possible, as described in, inter alia, Hamajima et al, Clin. Immunol.

Immunopathol, 88(2), 205-10 (1998). Liposomes (e.g., as described in U.S. Patent No. 6,472,375) and microencapsulation can also be used. Biodegradable targetable microparticle delivery systems can also be used (e.g., as described in U.S. Patent No. 6,471,996).

IV. Methods of enhancing protein translation Some embodiments disclosed herein provide compositions for and methods of enhancing protein translation in a cell, for example, by recruiting an m7G cap or a variant or analog thereof to the vicinity of a desired start codon in an mRNA. By bringing the m7G cap or a variant or analog thereof closer to the desired start codon as compared to the endogenous m7G cap of the mRNA, translation initiation proteins can be recruited to the vicinity of the start codon, thereby initiating translation. The methods include contacting the cell with a cap- conjugated oligonucleotide comprising an m7G cap or a variant or analog thereof conjugated to an oligonucleotide, where the oligonucleotide is capable of specifically hybridizing with a target sequence in an mRNA. The oligonucleotide can include one or more modifications (e.g., any of the modifications disclosed herein or known in the art) that, e.g., reduce sensitivity to cellular nucleases and/or increase stability. The m7G cap or a variant or analog thereof can be conjugated (e.g., through a linker) to the oligonucleotide at the 5’ end, 3’ end or at any of the nucleotides between the 5’ and 3’ ends. The m7G cap or a variant or analog thereof can include one or more modifications that can, e.g., enhance EIF4E association and/or to prevent further conjugation from the 3’ hydroxyl group.

Methods of measuring levels of protein translation are known in the art. Exemplary methods include western blot, mass spectrometry, antibody staining, and FACS analysis. In some instances, a reporter gene that encodes a reporter molecule can be linked to the target mRNA, which can be translated together with the target mRNA. Levels of target mRNA translation can then be measured based on the levels of the reporter molecule. Exemplary reporter molecules include fluorescent or luminescent proteins (e.g., GFP, dsRed, YFP, etc.) and enzymes (e.g., luciferase, beta-galactosidase, and chloramphenicol acetyltransferase). Expression of the reporter molecules can be detected using methods known in the art. For example, to detect fluorescent or luminescent proteins, fluorescent microscopes can be used. The respective substrates for the enzymes can be applied for detection.

In some embodiments, enhancing translation or increasing or upregulating gene expression refers to an increase in the amount of peptide translated from the target mRNA as compared to a control. In some embodiments, the control includes a level of peptide translated from the target mRNA in the absence of the capped-oligonucleotide compositions and methods. In some embodiments, the control includes the level of the peptide translated from the target mRNA prior to addition of the compositions disclosed herein. In some embodiments, translation is increased about 1.1 fold, about 1.2 fold, about 1.3 fold, about 1.4 fold, about 1.5 fold, about 1.6 fold, about 1.7 fold, about 1.8 fold, about 1.9 fold, about 2 fold, about 2.5 fold, about 3 fold, about 4 fold, about 5 fold, about 6 fold, about 7 fold, about 8 fold, about 9 fold, about 10 fold, about 20 fold, about 50 fold, about 100 fold, about 1000 fold, or about 10,000 fold relative to the control. The amount of peptide translated can be determined by any method known in the art.

In certain embodiments, methods of modulating protein translation are useful for treating patients afflicted with a disease or disorder. In one embodiment, methods of using the cap-conjugated oligonucleotide compositions disclosed herein are useful for treating haploinsufficiency. Exemplary haploinsufficiency diseases or disorders include, without limitation, Autosomal dominant Retinitis Pigmentosa (RP11) caused by mutations in PRPF31, Autosomal dominant Retinitis Pigmentosa (RP31) caused by mutations in

TOPORS, Frontotemporal dementia caused by mutations in GRN, DeVivo Syndrome (Glutl deficiency) caused by mutations in SLC2A1, Dravet syndrome caused by mutations in SCN1A.

In another embodiment, methods of using the cap-conjugated oligonucleotide compositions disclosed herein for treating diseases or disorders involving mutations which lead to introduction of a premature termination codon (PTC) resulting in degradation from mutant allele or loss of function of the protein (or less protein to be produced) are contemplated herein.

In another embodiment, methods of translation enhancement using the cap-conjugated oligonucleotide compositions disclosed herein are useful for treating cancer. In one embodiment, the methods can be used for upregulating protein expression of tumor suppressor genes (TSG) in tissue predisposed to cancer due to hereditary (or acquired) mutations of TSG. In another embodiment, the methods can be used for upregulating protein expression from genes that would prevent cancer from metastasizing (e.g. angiogenesis genes). In another embodiment, the methods can be used for upregulating protein expression from genes that would result in the cancer being more susceptible to follow-up treatments. In another embodiment, the methods can be used for translational enhancement to prevent cancer evasion of the immune system.

As used herein, the“administration” of the compositions disclosed herein to a subject includes any route of introducing or delivering to a subject the agent to perform its intended function. Administration can be carried out by any suitable route, including orally, intranasally, intraocularly, ophthalmically, parenterally (intravenously, intramuscularly, intraperitoneally, or subcutaneously), or topically. Administration includes self

administration and the administration by another. In some aspects, the disclosure provides a method of treating a disease or disorder comprising administering to a subject a therapeutically effective amount of a cap-conjugated oligonucleotide composition(s) of the disclosure, thereby enhancing translation of a target mRNA in the subject. In some embodiments, the target mRNA is involved in the etiology of a disease or condition in the subject.

In some embodiments of the methods described herein, the subject or patient is an animal. In some embodiments, the subject is a mammal. In some embodiments, the mammal is a bovine, equine, porcine, canine, feline, simian, murine, or human. In some embodiments, the subject is a human.

In some embodiments of the compositions and methods of the disclosure, a disease or disorder of the disclosure includes, but is not limited to, a genetic disease or disorder. In some embodiments, the genetic disease or disorder is a single-gene disease or disorder. In some embodiments, the single-gene disease or disorder is an autosomal dominant disease or disorder, an autosomal recessive disease or disorder, an X-chromosome linked (X-linked) disease or disorder, an X-linked dominant disease or disorder, an X-linked recessive disease or disorder, a Y-linked disease or disorder or a mitochondrial disease or disorder. In some embodiments, the genetic disease or disorder is a multiple-gene disease or disorder. In some embodiments, the genetic disease or disorder is a multiple-gene disease or disorder. In some embodiments, the single-gene disease or disorder is an autosomal dominant disease or disorder including, but not limited to, Huntington's disease, neurofibromatosis type 1, neurofibromatosis type 2, Marfan syndrome, hereditary nonpolyposis colorectal cancer, hereditary multiple exostoses, Von Willebrand disease, and acute intermittent porphyria. In some embodiments, the single-gene disease or disorder is an autosomal recessive disease or disorder including, but not limited to, Albinism, Medium-chain acyl-CoA dehydrogenase deficiency, cystic fibrosis, sickle-cell disease, Tay-Sachs disease, Niemann-Pick disease, spinal muscular atrophy, and Roberts syndrome. In some embodiments, the single-gene disease or disorder is X-linked disease or disorder including, but not limited to, muscular dystrophy, Duchenne muscular dystrophy, Hemophilia, Adrenoleukodystrophy (ALD), Rett syndrome, and Hemophilia A. In some embodiments, the single-gene disease or disorder is a mitochondrial disorder including, but not limited to, Leber’s hereditary optic neuropathy.

In some embodiments of the compositions and methods of the disclosure, a disease or disorder of the disclosure includes, but is not limited to, an immune disease or disorder. In some embodiments, the immune disease or disorder is an immunodeficiency disease or disorder including, but not limited to, B-cell deficiency, T-cell deficiency, neutropenia, asplenia, complement deficiency, acquired immunodeficiency syndrome (AIDS) and immunodeficiency due to medical intervention (immunosuppression as an intended or adverse effect of a medical therapy). In some embodiments, the immune disease or disorder is an autoimmune disease or disorder including, but not limited to, Achalasia, Addison’s disease, Adult Still's disease, Agammaglobulinemia, Alopecia areata, Amyloidosis, Anti- GBM/Anti-TBM nephritis, Antiphospholipid syndrome, Autoimmune angioedema,

Autoimmune dysautonomia, Autoimmune encephalomyelitis, Autoimmune hepatitis, Autoimmune inner ear disease (AIED), Autoimmune myocarditis, Autoimmune oophoritis, Autoimmune orchitis, Autoimmune pancreatitis, Autoimmune retinopathy, Autoimmune urticaria, Axonal & neuronal neuropathy (AMAN), Balo disease, Behcet’s disease, Benign mucosal pemphigoid, Bullous pemphigoid, Castleman disease (CD), Celiac disease, Chagas disease, Chronic inflammatory demyelinating polyneuropathy (CIDP), Chronic recurrent multifocal osteomyelitis (CRMO), Churg-Strauss Syndrome (CSS) or Eosinophilic

Granulomatosis (EGPA), Cicatricial pemphigoid, Cogan’s syndrome, Cold agglutinin disease, Congenital heart block, Coxsackie myocarditis, CREST syndrome, Crohn’s disease, Dermatitis herpetiformis, Dermatomyositis, Devic’s disease (neuromyelitis optica), Discoid lupus, Dressier’ s syndrome, Endometriosis, Eosinophilic esophagitis (EoE), Eosinophilic fasciitis, Erythema nodosum, Essential mixed cryoglobulinemia, Evans syndrome,

Fibromyalgia, Fibrosing alveolitis, Giant cell arteritis (temporal arteritis), Giant cell myocarditis, Glomerulonephritis, Goodpasture’s syndrome, Granulomatosis with

Polyangiitis, Graves’ disease, Guillain-Barre syndrome, Hashimoto’s thyroiditis, Hemolytic anemia, Henoch-Schonlein purpura (HSP), Herpes gestationis or pemphigoid gestationis (PG), Hidradenitis Suppurativa (HS) (Acne Inversa), Hypogammalglobulinemia, IgA Nephropathy, IgG4-related sclerosing disease, Immune thrombocytopenic purpura (ITP), Inclusion body myositis (IBM), Interstitial cystitis (IC), Juvenile arthritis, Juvenile diabetes (Type 1 diabetes), Juvenile myositis (JM), Kawasaki disease, Lambert-Eaton syndrome, Leukocytoclastic vasculitis, Lichen planus, Lichen sclerosus, Ligneous conjunctivitis, Linear IgA disease (LAD), Lupus, Lyme disease chronic, Meniere’s disease, Microscopic poly angiitis (MPA), Mixed connective tissue disease (MCTD), Mooren’s ulcer, Mucha- Habermann disease, Multifocal Motor Neuropathy (MMN) or MMNCB, Multiple sclerosis, Myasthenia gravis, Myositis, Narcolepsy, Neonatal Lupus, Neuromyelitis optica,

Neutropenia, Ocular cicatricial pemphigoid, Optic neuritis, Palindromic rheumatism (PR), PANDAS, Paraneoplastic cerebellar degeneration (PCD), Paroxysmal nocturnal

hemoglobinuria (PNJJ), Parry Romberg syndrome, Pars planitis (peripheral uveitis), Parsonnage-Tumer syndrome, Pemphigus, Peripheral neuropathy, Perivenous

encephalomyelitis, Pernicious anemia (PA), POEMS syndrome, Polyarteritis nodosa, Polyglandular syndromes type I, II, III, Polymyalgia rheumatica, Polymyositis,

Postmyocardial infarction syndrome, Postpericardiotomy syndrome, Primary biliary cirrhosis, Primary sclerosing cholangitis, Progesterone dermatitis, Psoriasis, Psoriatic arthritis, Pure red cell aplasia (PRC A), Pyoderma gangrenosum, Raynaud’s phenomenon, Reactive Arthritis, Reflex sympathetic dystrophy, Relapsing polychondritis, Restless legs syndrome (RLS), Retroperitoneal fibrosis, Rheumatic fever, Rheumatoid arthritis, Sarcoidosis, Schmidt syndrome, Scleritis, Scleroderma, Sjogren’s syndrome, Sperm & testicular autoimmunity, Stiff person syndrome (SPS), Subacute bacterial endocarditis (SBE), Susac’s syndrome, Sympathetic ophthalmia (SO), Takayasu’s arteritis, Temporal arteritis/Giant cell arteritis, Thrombocytopenic purpura (TTP), Tolosa-Hunt syndrome (THS), Transverse myelitis, Type 1 diabetes, Ulcerative colitis (UC), Undifferentiated connective tissue disease (UCTD), Uveitis, Vasculitis, Vitiligo, Vogt-Koyanagi-Harada Disease, or Wegener’s granulomatosis.

In some embodiments of the compositions and methods of the disclosure, a disease or disorder of the disclosure includes, but is not limited to, an inflammatory disease or disorder.

In some embodiments of the compositions and methods of the disclosure, a disease or disorder of the disclosure includes, but is not limited to, a metabolic disease or disorder.

In some embodiments of the compositions and methods of the disclosure, a disease or disorder of the disclosure includes, but is not limited to, a degenerative or a progressive disease or disorder. In some embodiments, the degenerative or a progressive disease or disorder includes, but is not limited to, amyotrophic lateral sclerosis (ALS), Huntington’s disease, Alzheimer’s disease, and aging.

In some embodiments of the compositions and methods of the disclosure, a disease or disorder of the disclosure includes, but is not limited to, an infectious disease or disorder.

In some embodiments of the compositions and methods of the disclosure, a disease or disorder of the disclosure includes, but is not limited to, a pediatric or a developmental disease or disorder.

In some embodiments of the compositions and methods of the disclosure, a disease or disorder of the disclosure includes, but is not limited to, a cardiovascular disease or disorder.

In some embodiments of the compositions and methods of the disclosure, a disease or disorder of the disclosure includes, but is not limited to, a proliferative disease or disorder. In some embodiments, the proliferative disease or disorder is a cancer. In some embodiments, the cancer includes, but is not limited to, Acute Lymphoblastic Leukemia (ALL), Acute Myeloid Leukemia (AML), Adrenocortical Carcinoma, AIDS-Related Cancers, Kaposi Sarcoma (Soft Tissue Sarcoma), AIDS-Related Lymphoma (Lymphoma), Primary CNS Lymphoma (Lymphoma), Anal Cancer, Appendix Cancer, Gastrointestinal Carcinoid Tumors, Astrocytomas, Atypical Teratoid/Rhabdoid Tumor, Central Nervous System (Brain Cancer), Basal Cell Carcinoma, Bile Duct Cancer, Bladder Cancer, Bone Cancer, Ewing Sarcoma, Osteosarcoma, Malignant Fibrous Histiocytoma, Brain Tumors, Breast Cancer, Burkitt Lymphoma, Carcinoid Tumor, Carcinoma, Cardiac (Heart) Tumors, Embryonal Tumors, Germ Cell Tumor, Primary CNS Lymphoma, Cervical Cancer, Cholangiocarcinoma, Chordoma, Chronic Lymphocytic Leukemia (CLL), Chronic Myelogenous Leukemia (CML), Chronic Myeloproliferative Neoplasms, Colorectal Cancer , Craniopharyngioma, Cutaneous T-Cell Lymphoma, Ductal Carcinoma In Situ, Embryonal Tumors, Endometrial Cancer (UterineCancer), Ependymoma, Esophageal Cancer, Esthesioneuroblastoma (Head and Neck Cancer), Ewing Sarcoma (Bone Cancer), Extracranial Germ Cell Tumor, Extragonadal Germ Cell Tumor, Eye Cancer, Childhood Intraocular Melanoma, Intraocular Melanoma,

Retinoblastoma, Fallopian Tube Cancer, Fibrous Histiocytoma of Bone, Malignant, and Osteosarcoma, Gallbladder Cancer, Gastric (Stomach) Cancer, Gastrointestinal Carcinoid Tumor, Gastrointestinal Stromal Tumors (GIST) (Soft Tissue Sarcoma), Childhood

Gastrointestinal Stromal Tumors, Germ Cell Tumors, Childhood Extracranial Germ Cell Tumors, Extragonadal Germ Cell Tumors, Ovarian Germ Cell Tumors, Testicular Cancer, Gestational Trophoblastic Disease, Hairy Cell Leukemia, Head and Neck Cancer, Heart Tumors, Hepatocellular (Liver) Cancer, Histiocytosis, Hodgkin Lymphoma, Hypopharyngeal Cancer (Head and Neck Cancer), Intraocular Melanoma, Islet Cell Tumors, Pancreatic Neuroendocrine Tumors, Kaposi Sarcoma (Soft Tissue Sarcoma), Kidney (Renal Cell) Cancer, Langerhans Cell Histiocytosis, Laryngeal Cancer (Head and Neck Cancer),

Leukemia, Lip and Oral Cavity Cancer (Head and Neck Cancer), Liver Cancer, Lung Cancer (Non-Small Cell and Small Cell), Childhood Lung Cancer, Lymphoma, Male Breast Cancer, Malignant Fibrous Histiocytoma of Bone and Osteosarcoma, Melanoma, Merkel Cell Carcinoma (Skin Cancer), Mesothelioma, Metastatic Squamous Neck Cancer with Occult Primary (Head and Neck Cancer), Midline Tract Carcinoma With NUT Gene Changes,

Mouth Cancer (Head and Neck Cancer), Multiple Endocrine Neoplasia Syndromes, Multiple Myeloma/Plasma Cell Neoplasms, Mycosis Fungoides (Lymphoma), Myelodysplastic Syndromes, Myelodysplastic/Myeloproliferative Neoplasms, Nasal Cavity and Paranasal Sinus Cancer (Head and Neck Cancer), Nasopharyngeal Cancer (Head and Neck Cancer), Neuroblastoma, Non- Hodgkin Lymphoma, Non-Small Cell Lung Cancer, Oral Cancer, Lip and Oral Cavity Cancer and Oropharyngeal Cancer, Osteosarcoma and Malignant Fibrous Histiocytoma of Bone, Ovarian Cancer, Pancreatic Cancer, Pancreatic Neuroendocrine Tumors (Islet Cell Tumors), Papillomatosis, Paraganglioma, Parathyroid Cancer, Penile Cancer, Pharyngeal Cancer (Head and Neck Cancer), Pheochromocytoma , Plasma Cell Neoplasm/Multiple Myeloma, Pleuropulmonary Blastoma, Pregnancy and Breast Cancer, Primary Central Nervous System (CNS) Lymphoma, Primary Peritoneal Cancer, Prostate Cancer, Rectal Cancer, Recurrent Cancer, Renal Cell (Kidney) Cancer, Retinoblastoma, Rhabdomyosarcoma, Childhood (Soft Tissue Sarcoma), Salivary Gland Cancer (Head and Neck Cancer), Sarcoma, Childhood Rhabdomyosarcoma (Soft Tissue Sarcoma), Childhood Vascular Tumors (Soft Tissue Sarcoma), Ewing Sarcoma (Bone Cancer), Kaposi Sarcoma (Soft Tissue Sarcoma), Osteosarcoma (Bone Cancer), Uterine Sarcoma, Sezary Syndrome, Lymphoma, Skin Cancer, Small Cell Lung Cancer, Small Intestine Cancer, Soft Tissue Sarcoma, Squamous Cell Carcinoma of the Skin, Squamous Neck Cancer, Stomach (Gastric) Cancer, T-Cell Lymphoma, Testicular Cancer, Throat Cancer (Head and Neck Cancer), Nasopharyngeal Cancer, Oropharyngeal Cancer, Hypopharyngeal Cancer, Thymoma and Thymic Carcinoma , Thyroid Cancer, Transitional Cell Cancer of the Renal Pelvis and Ureter, Renal Cell Cancer, Urethral Cancer, Uterine Sarcoma, Vaginal Cancer, Vascular Tumors (Soft Tissue Sarcoma), Vulvar Cancer, Wilms Tumor and Other Childhood Kidney Tumors.

In some embodiments of the methods of the disclosure, a subject of the disclosure has been diagnosed with the disease or disorder. In some embodiments, the subject of the disclosure presents at least one sign or symptom of the disease or disorder. In some embodiments, the subject has a biomarker predictive of a risk of developing the disease or disorder. In some embodiments, the biomarker is a genetic mutation.

In some embodiments of the methods of the disclosure, a subject of the disclosure is female. In some embodiments of the methods of the disclosure, a subject of the disclosure is male. In some embodiments, a subject of the disclosure has two XX or XY chromosomes. In some embodiments, a subject of the disclosure has two XX or XY chromosomes and a third chromosome, either an X or a Y.

In some embodiments of the methods of the disclosure, a subject of the disclosure is a neonate, an infant, a child, an adult, a senior adult, or an elderly adult. In some embodiments of the methods of the disclosure, a subject of the disclosure is at least 1, 2, 3, 4, 5,6, 7, 8, 9, 10, 11, 12, 13, 14, 15, 16, 17, 18, 19, 20, 21, 22, 23, 24, 25, 26, 27,28, 29, 30 or 31 days old. In some embodiments of the methods of the disclosure, a subject of the disclosure is at least 1, 2, 3, 4, 5, 6, 7, 8, 9, 10, 11 or 12 months old. In some embodiments of the methods of the disclosure, a subject of the disclosure is at least 1, 2, 3, 4, 5, 6, 7, 8, 9, 10, 15, 20, 25, 30, 35, 40, 45, 50, 55, 60, 65, 70, 75, 80, 85, 90, 95, 100 or any number of years or partial years in between of age.

In some embodiments of the methods of the disclosure, a subject of the disclosure is a mammal. In some embodiments, a subject of the disclosure is a non-human mammal.

In some embodiments of the methods of the disclosure, a subject of the disclosure is a human.

In some embodiments of the methods of the disclosure, a therapeutically effective amount comprises a single dose of a composition of the disclosure. In some embodiments, a therapeutically effective amount comprises a therapeutically effective amount comprises at least one dose of a composition of the disclosure. In some embodiments, a therapeutically effective amount comprises a therapeutically effective amount comprises one or more dose(s) of a composition of the disclosure. In some embodiments of the methods of the disclosure, a therapeutically effective amount eliminates a sign or symptom of the disease or disorder. In some embodiments, a therapeutically effective amount reduces a severity of a sign or symptom of the disease or disorder.

In some embodiments of the methods of the disclosure, a therapeutically effective amount eliminates the disease or disorder.

In some embodiments of the methods of the disclosure, a therapeutically effective amount prevents an onset of a disease or disorder. In some embodiments, a therapeutically effective amount delays the onset of a disease or disorder. In some embodiments, a therapeutically effective amount reduces the severity of a sign or symptom of the disease or disorder. In some embodiments, a therapeutically effective amount improves a prognosis for the subject.

In some embodiments of the methods of the disclosure, a composition of the disclosure is administered to the subject systemically. In some embodiments, the composition of the

disclosure is administered to the subject by an intravenous route. In some

embodiments, the composition of the disclosure is administered to the subject by an injection or an infusion.

In some embodiments of the methods of the disclosure, a composition of the disclosure is administered to the subject locally. In some embodiments, the composition of the disclosure is administered to the subject by an intraosseous, intraocular, intracerebrospinal, or intraspinal route. In some embodiments, the composition of the disclosure is administered directly to the cerebral spinal fluid of the central nervous system.

In some embodiments, the composition of the disclosure is administered directly to a tissue or fluid of the eye and does not have bioavailability outside of ocular structures. In some embodiments, the composition of the disclosure is administered to the subject by an injection or an infusion.

EXAMPLES

The following examples are provided to better illustrate the claimed invention and are not to be interpreted as limiting the scope of the invention. To the extent that specific materials are mentioned, it is merely for purposes of illustration and is not intended to limit the invention. One skilled in the art can develop equivalent means or reactants without the exercise of inventive capacity and without departing from the scope of the invention.

Example 1: Recruitment of m7G cap to target start codons using short complementary oligonucleotide sequences

Cap-conjugated synthetic oligonucleotides were designed to target sequences in the BRCA1 mRNA. Three cap-conjugated oligonucleotides capable of hybridizing with three different sequences surrounding a start codon of the BRCA1 coding sequence were designed (FIG. 1A). A cap-conjugated oligonucleotide that did not target any sequence in the BRCA1 mRNA (non-targeting) was used as control. Oligonucleotides corresponding to the four cap- conjugated oligonucleotides described above, but do not contain the cap structure

(“Oligonucleotide only”) were also used as controls. As shown in FIGs. IB and 1C, in contrast to oligonucleotide only, cap-conjugated oligonucleotides targeting different sequences (site 1, site 2, and site 3) in the BRCA1 mRNA resulted in differential changes in BRCA1 protein expression. Targeting certain sequences (e.g., site 2 and site 3) resulted in increased BRCA1 protein as compared to non-targeting cap-conjugated oligonucleotides.

ADDITIONAL EMBODIMENTS

Embodiment 1 : A conjugated m7G cap having the structure:

wherein b’ comprises a sequence complementary to a target sequence in a messgenger

RNA. Embodiment 2: The conjugated m7G cap of Embodiment 1, wherein the target sequence is proximal to a target start codon of the messenger RNA relative to a 5’ m7G cap of the messenger RNA.

Embodiment 3: The conjugated m7G cap of Embodiment 1, wherein the target sequence comprises the target start codon of the messenger RNA.

Embodiment 4: The conjugated m7G cap of Embodiment 2, wherein the 5’ end of the target sequence is upstream to the target start codon of the messenger RNA. Embodiment 5: The conjugated m7G cap of Embodiment 2, wherein the 5’ end of the target sequence is downstream to the target start codon of the messenger RNA.

Embodiment 6: A conjugated m7G cap having the structure: wherein r’ is methyl or a functional group configured to prevent further extension, a’ is methyl or a functional group configured to enhance association with an EIF4E protein,

b’ is oxygen or sulfur,

c’ is a nitrogenous base,

d’ is a linker, and

e’ is a targeting moiety.

Embodiment 7: The conjugated m7G cap of Embodiment 6, wherein c’ is a nitrogenous base selected from the group consisting of adenine, guanine, cytosine, thymine and uracil.

Embodiment 8: The conjugated m7G cap of Embodiment 7, wherein d’ is a biocompatible polymeric linker.

Embodiment 9: The conjugated m7G cap of Embodiment 8, wherein d’ is a polyethlene glycol (PEG) comprising fewer than about 30 subunits.

Embodiment 10: The conjugated m7G cap of Embodiment 6, wherein e’ comprises a nucleic acid sequence complementary to a target sequence in a messenger RNA.

Embodiment 11: The conjugated m7G cap of Embodiment 10, wherein the target sequence is proximal to a target start codon of the messenger RNA relative to a 5’ m7G cap of the messenger RNA. Embodiment 12: The conjugated m7G cap of Embodiment 10, wherein the target sequence comprises the target start codon of the messenger RNA.

Embodiment 13: The conjugated m7G cap of Embodiment 11, wherein the 5’ end of the target sequence is upstream to the target start codon of the messenger RNA.

Embodiment 14: The conjugated m7G cap of Embodiment 11, wherein the 5’ end of the target sequence is downstream to the target start codon of the messenger RNA.

Embodiment 15: The conjugated m7G cap of Embodiment 10, wherein the nucleic acid sequence comprises one or more phosphorothiorate modification(s), and wherein the nucleic acid sequence comprises about 10 to about 25 nucleotides.

Embodiment 16: The conjugated m7G cap of Embodiment 10, wherein the nucleic acid sequence comprises one or more locked nucleic acid(s), and wherein the nucleic acid sequence comprises about 5 to about 15 nucleotides.

Embodiment 17: The conjugated m7G cap of Embodiment 10, wherein the nucleic acid sequence comprises one or more phosphorothiorate modification(s) and one or more locked nucleic acid(s), and wherein the nucleic acid sequence comprises fewer than about 25 nucleotides.

Embodiment 18: The conjugated m7G cap of Embodiment 6, wherein nl is fewer than about 4.

A conjugated m7G cap having the structure:

OH OH Wherein a’ is methyl or a functional group configured to enhance association with an

EIF4E protein,

b’ is oxygen or sulfur,

c’ is a linker, and

d’ is a targeting moiety.

Embodiment 19: The conjugated m7G cap of Embodiment 18, wherein c’ is a biocompatible polymeric linker.

Embodiment 20: The conjugated m7G cap of Embodiment 19, wherein c’ is a polyethlene glycol (PEG) comprising fewer than about 30 subunits.

Embodiment 21: The conjugated m7G cap of Embodiment 18, wherein d’ comprises a nucleic acid sequence complementary to a target sequence in a messenger RNA.

Embodiment 22: The conjugated m7G cap of Embodiment 21, wherein the target sequence is proximal to a target start codon of the messenger RNA relative to a 5’ m7G cap of the messenger RNA.

Embodiment 23: The conjugated m7G cap of Embodiment 21, wherein the target sequence comprises the target start codon of the messenger RNA.

Embodiment 24: The conjugated m7G cap of Embodiment 22, wherein the 5’ end of the target sequence is upstream to the target start codon of the messenger RNA.

Embodiment 25: The conjugated m7G cap of Embodiment 22, wherein the 5’ end of the target sequence is downstream to the target start codon of the messenger RNA.

Embodiment 26: The conjugated m7G cap of Embodiment 21, wherein the nucleic acid sequence comprises one or more phosphorothiorate modification(s), and wherein the nucleic acid sequence comprises about 10 to about 25 nucleotides.

Embodiment 27: The conjugated m7G cap of Embodiment 21, wherein the nucleic acid sequence comprises one or more locked nucleic acid(s), and wherein the nucleic acid sequence comprises about 5 to about 15 nucleotides. Embodiment 28: The conjugated m7G cap of Embodiment 21, wherein the nucleic acid sequence comprises one or more phosphorothiorate modification(s) and one or more locked nucleic acid(s), and wherein the nucleic acid sequence comprises fewer than about 25 nucleotides.

Embodiment 29: The conjugated m7G cap of Embodiment 18, wherein nl is fewer than about 4.

OTHER EMBODIMENTS

It is to be understood that while the invention has been described in conjunction with the detailed description thereof, the foregoing description is intended to illustrate and not limit the scope of the invention, which is defined by the scope of the appended claims. Other aspects, advantages, and modifications are within the scope of the following claims.