Alexander Chetverin

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The ability of RNAs to spontaneously rearrange their sequences under physiological conditions is demonstrated using the molecular colony technique, which allows single RNA molecules to be detected provided that they are amplifiable by the replicase of bacteriophage Qbeta. The rearrangements are Mg2+-dependent, sequence-non-specific, and occur both in trans(More)
Current models of recombination between viral RNAs are based on replicative template-switch mechanisms. The existence of nonreplicative RNA recombination in poliovirus is demonstrated in the present study by the rescue of viable viruses after cotransfections with different pairs of genomic RNA fragments with suppressed translatable and replicating(More)
Extensive nonhomologous recombinations occur between the 5' and 3' fragments of a replicable RNA in a cell-free system composed of pure Qbeta phage replicase and ribonucleoside triphosphates, providing direct evidence for the ability of RNAs to recombine without DNA intermediates and in the absence of host cell proteins. The recombination events are(More)
For more than three decades, RNA recombination remained a puzzle and has only begun to be solved in the last few years. The available data provide evidence for a variety of RNA recombination mechanisms. Non-homologous recombination seems to be the most common for RNA. Recent experiments in both the in vitro and the in vivo systems indicate that this type of(More)
When PCR is carried out in a polyacrylamide gel, each target molecule forms a molecular colony that comprises many copies of the original template. By counting the number of colonies, one can directly determine the target titer, with 100% of the DNA molecules and approximately 15% of the RNA molecules being detected. Furthermore, because of the spatial(More)
Numerous RNA species of different length and nucleotide sequence grow spontaneously in vitro in Q beta replicase reactions where no RNA templates are added deliberately. Here, we show that this spontaneous RNA synthesis by Q beta replicase is template directed. The immediate source of template RNA can be the laboratory air, but there are ways to eliminate,(More)
A method for RNA amplification in an immobilized medium is described. The medium contains a complete set of nucleotide substrates and purified Q beta replicase, an enzyme capable of exponentially amplifying RNAs under isothermal conditions. RNA amplification in the immobilized medium results in the formation of separate 'colonies', each comprising the(More)
An earlier developed purified cell-free system was used to explore the potential of two RNA-directed RNA polymerases (RdRps), Qbeta phage replicase and the poliovirus 3Dpol protein, to promote RNA recombination through a primer extension mechanism. The substrates of recombination were fragments of complementary strands of a Qbeta phage-derived RNA, such(More)
A universal procedure that permits the whole human blood to be tested for the presence of single molecules of DNA and RNA targets is described. The procedure includes a novel protocol for the isolation of total nucleic acids from the guanidinium thiocyanate lysate of unfractionated blood in which, prior to phenol/chloroform extraction, the sample is(More)
A variety of small RNAs ranging from tens to hundreds of nucleotides in length grow autocatalytically in a Q beta replicase (Q beta phage RNA-dependent RNA polymerase) reaction in the absence of added template, and similar RNAs are found in Q beta phage-infected Escherichia coli cells. Three such RNAs have been sequenced. One of them that is 221 nucleotides(More)