Unique dynamic properties of DNA duplexes containing interstrand cross-links

Joshua I. Friedman, Yu Lin Jiang, Paul S. Miller, James Stivers

Research output: Contribution to journalArticle

Abstract

Bifunctional DNA alkylating agents form a diverse assortment of covalent DNA interstrand cross-linked (ICL) structures that are potent cytotoxins. Because it is implausible that cells could possess distinct DNA repair systems for each individual ICL, it is believed that common structural and dynamic features of ICL damage are recognized, rather than specific structural characteristics of each cross-linking agent. Investigation of the structural and dynamic properties of ICLs that might be important for recognition has been complicated by heterogeneous incorporation of these lesions into DNA. To address this problem, we have synthesized and characterized several homogeneous ICL DNAs containing site-specific staggered N4- cytosine-ethyl-N4-cytosine cross-links. Staggered cross-links were introduced in two ways, in a manner that preserves the overall structure of B-form duplex DNA and in a manner that highly distorts the DNA structure, with the goal of understanding how structural and dynamic properties of diverse ICL duplexes might flag these sites for repair. Measurements of base pair opening dynamics in the B-form ICL duplex by 1H NMR line width or imino proton solvent exchange showed that the guanine base opposite the cross-linked cytosine opened at least 1 order of magnitude more slowly than when in a control matched normal duplex. To a lesser degree, the B-form ICL also induced a decrease in base pair opening dynamics that extended from the site of the cross-link to adjacent base pairs. In contrast, the non-B-form ICL showed extensive conformational dynamics at the site of the cross-link, which extended over the entire DNA sequence. Because DNA duplexes containing the B-form and non-B-form ICL cross-links have both been shown to be incised when incubated in mammalian whole cell extracts, while a matched normal duplex is not, we conclude that intrinsic DNA dynamics is not a requirement for specific damage incision of these ICLs. Instead, we propose a general model in which destabilized ICL duplexes serve to energetically facilitate binding of DNA repair factors that must induce bubbles or other distortions in the duplex. However, the essential requirement for incision is an immobile Y-junction where the repair factors are stably bound at the site of the ICL, and the two DNA strands are unpaired.

Original languageEnglish (US)
Pages (from-to)882-890
Number of pages9
JournalBiochemistry®
Volume50
Issue number5
DOIs
StatePublished - Feb 8 2011

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DNA
Cytosine
Base Pairing
Repair
DNA Repair
B-Form DNA
Alkylating Agents
Cytotoxins
Guanine
Cell Extracts
Protons
DNA sequences
Linewidth
Nuclear magnetic resonance

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • Biochemistry

Cite this

Unique dynamic properties of DNA duplexes containing interstrand cross-links. / Friedman, Joshua I.; Jiang, Yu Lin; Miller, Paul S.; Stivers, James.

In: Biochemistry®, Vol. 50, No. 5, 08.02.2011, p. 882-890.

Research output: Contribution to journalArticle

Friedman, Joshua I. ; Jiang, Yu Lin ; Miller, Paul S. ; Stivers, James. / Unique dynamic properties of DNA duplexes containing interstrand cross-links. In: Biochemistry®. 2011 ; Vol. 50, No. 5. pp. 882-890.
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