Biological Structure and Dynamics: Proceedings of the Ninth Conversation in the Discipline Biomolecular Stereodynamics
- S. E. Osbome, R. J. Cain, +5 authors G. D. Glick
The base pair lifetimes and apparent dissociation constants of a 21 base DNA hairpin and an analog possessing a disulfide cross-link bridging the 3'- and 5'-terminal bases were determined by measuring imino proton exchange rates as a function of exchange catalyst concentration and temperature. A comparison of the lifetimes and apparent dissociation constants for corresponding base pairs of the two hairpins indicates that the cross-link neither increases the number of base pairs involved in fraying nor alters the lifetime, dissociation constant, or the opened structure from which exchange occurs for the base pairs that are not frayed. The cross-link does, however, stabilize the frayed penultimate base pair of the stem duplex. Significantly, it appears that the disulfide cross-link is more effective at preventing fraying of the penultimate base pair than is the 5 base hairpin loop. Because this disulfide cross-link can be incorporated site specifically, and does not adversely affect static or dynamic properties of DNA, it should prove very useful in studies of nucleic acid structure and function.