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Increased temperature and 2-methyl-2,4-pentanediol change the DNA structure of both curved and uncurved adenine/thymine-rich sequences

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DNA curvature is affected by elevated temperature and dehydrating agents such as 2-methyl-2,4-pentanediol (MPD) (used in crystallization). This effect of MPD has been ascribed to a specific distortion of the structure of adenine tracts (A-tracts), probably through a deformation of the characteristic narrow minor groove. Uranyl photoprobing indicates that a narrowed minor groove is present in all A/T regions containing four or more A/T base pairs. Consequently, this technique may be employed to study conformational changes in other A/T-rich sequences than pure A-tracts. In this study we use uranyl photoprobing to demonstrate that the effect of elevated temperature and MPD is analogous on both "normal" and curve-inducing A/T-rich sequences. The results therefore indicate that under these conditions the minor groove is widened in all A/T sequences and not only in pure A-tracts as previously suggested. Thus, the rather subtle structural difference of AT regions and A-tracts in nonbent DNA versus A-tracts in bent DNA may be quantitative rather than qualitative; i.e., the structure is more persistent and/or rigid in bent DNA.

OriginalsprogEngelsk
TidsskriftBiochemistry
Vol/bind42
Udgave nummer28
Sider (fra-til)8587-93
Antal sider7
ISSN0006-2960
DOI
StatusUdgivet - 22 jul. 2003

ID: 203634211