Joséphine Abi-Ghanem

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Targeted genome engineering has become an important research area for diverse disciplines, with site-specific recombinases (SSRs) being among the most popular genome engineering tools. Their ability to trigger excision, integration, inversion and translocation has made SSRs an invaluable tool to manipulate DNA in vitro and in vivo. However, sophisticated(More)
Understanding the preference of nonspecific proteins for certain DNA structural features requires an accurate description of the properties of free DNA, especially regarding their possible predisposition to adopt a conformation that favors the formation of a complex. Exploiting previous exhaustive NMR studies performed on free DNA oligomers, we investigated(More)
DNase I requires Ca²+ and Mg²+ for hydrolyzing double-stranded DNA. However, the number and the location of DNase I ion-binding sites remain unclear, as well as the role of these counter-ions. Using molecular dynamics simulations, we show that bovine pancreatic (bp) DNase I contains four ion-binding pockets. Two of them strongly bind Ca²+ while the other(More)
Current combination antiretroviral therapies (cART) efficiently suppress HIV-1 reproduction in humans, but the virus persists as integrated proviral reservoirs in small numbers of cells. To generate an antiviral agent capable of eradicating the provirus from infected cells, we employed 145 cycles of substrate-linked directed evolution to evolve a(More)
For B-DNA, the strong linear correlation observed by nuclear magnetic resonance (NMR) between the (31)P chemical shifts (deltaP) and three recurrent internucleotide distances demonstrates the tight coupling between phosphate motions and helicoidal parameters. It allows to translate deltaP into distance restraints directly exploitable in structural(More)
Site-specific recombinases (SSRs) can perform DNA rearrangements, including deletions, inversions and translocations when their naive target sequences are placed strategically into the genome of an organism. Hence, in order to employ SSRs in heterologous hosts, their target sites have to be introduced into the genome of an organism before the enzyme can be(More)
Current drugs against HIV can suppress the progression to AIDS but cannot clear the patient from the virus. Because of potential side effects of these drugs and the possible development of drug resistance, finding a cure for HIV infection remains a high priority of HIV/AIDS research. We recently generated a recombinase (termed Tre) tailored to efficiently(More)
The Cre/loxP system is widely used as a genetic tool to manipulate DNA. Cre recombinase catalyzes site-specific recombination between 34 bp loxP sites. Each loxP site is recognized by two Cre molecules assuming a cleaving (CreC) and non-cleaving (CreNC) activity. Despite the symmetry in the sequences of the arms of loxP, available biochemical data show(More)
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