John F. Marko

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BACKGROUND Structural studies of fixed cells have revealed that interphase chromosomes are highly organized into specific arrangements in the nucleus, and have led to a picture of the nucleus as a static structure with immobile chromosomes held in fixed positions, an impression apparently confirmed by recent photobleaching studies. Functional studies of(More)
Isolated newt (Notophthalmus viridescens) chromosomes were studied by using micromechanical force measurement during nuclease digestion. Micrococcal nuclease and short-recognition-sequence blunt-cutting restriction enzymes first remove the native elastic response of, and then to go on to completely disintegrate, single metaphase newt chromosomes. These(More)
Essentially all the biological functions of DNA depend on site-specific DNA-binding proteins finding their targets, and therefore 'searching' through megabases of non-target DNA. In this article, we review current understanding of how this sequence searching is done. We review how simple diffusion through solution may be unable to account for the rapid(More)
The force-extension behavior of individual mitotic newt chromosomes was studied, using micropipette surgery and manipulation, for elongations up to 80 times native length. After elongations up to five times, chromosomes return to their native length. In this regime chromosomes have linear elasticity, requiring approximately 1 nN of force to be stretched to(More)
BACKGROUND Mitosis involves the interaction of many different components, including chromatin, microtubules, and motor proteins. Dissecting the mechanics of mitosis requires methods of studying not just each component in isolation, but also the entire ensemble of components in its full complexity in genetically tractable model organisms. RESULTS We have(More)
The structure of mitotic chromosomes in cultured newt lung cells was investigated by a quantitative study of their deformability, using micropipettes. Metaphase chromosomes are highly extensible objects that return to their native shape after being stretched up to 10 times their normal length. Larger deformations of 10 to 100 times irreversibly and(More)
Proteins that interact with specific DNA sites bind to DNA at random and then translocate to the target site. This may occur by one-dimensional diffusion along the DNA, or through three-dimensional space via multiple dissociation/re-associations. To distinguish these routes, reactions of the ECO:RV endonuclease were studied on substrates with two ECO:RV(More)
  • John F Marko
  • Physical review. E, Statistical, nonlinear, and…
  • 2007
In micromechanical studies of DNA, plectonemically supercoiled domains are often used as sources of constant torque. These torques are not easily measured and are instead usually estimated. Here, coexisting extended and supercoiled DNA domains are analyzed, and closed-form expressions for the dependence of extension and torque on force and linking number(More)
We analyze whether the "overstretched," or "S" form of double-stranded DNA consists of essentially separated, or essentially interacting, polynucleotide strands. Comparison of force-extension data for S-DNA and single-stranded DNA shows S-DNA to be distinct from both double helix and single-stranded forms. We use a simple thermodynamical model for(More)