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Hoffmann, R. A wiki for the life sciences where authorship matters. Nature Genetics (2008)

Excision of 5,6-dihydroxy-5,6-dihydrothymine, 5,6-dihydrothymine, and 5-hydroxycytosine from defined sequence oligonucleotides by Escherichia coli endonuclease III and Fpg proteins: kinetic and mechanistic aspects.

Oligonucleotides that contain a single modified pyrimidine, i.e., thymine glycol (Tg), 5,6-dihydrothymine (DHT), and 5-hydroxycytosine (5-OHC) were synthesized in order to investigate the substrate specificity and the excision mechanism of two Escherichia coli repair enzymes: endonuclease III and formamidopyrimidine DNA glycosylase ( Fpg). Three techniques of analysis were employed. A gas chromatography-mass spectrometry (GC-MS) assay with HPLC prepurification was used to quantify the release of the modified bases, while polyacrylamide gel electrophoresis and matrix-assisted laser-desorption ionization-mass spectrometry (MALDI-MS) provided insights into the mechanism of oligonucleotide cleavage. Values of Vm/Km constants lead to the conclusion that the substrates are processed by endonuclease III with the following preference: Tg >> 5-OHC > DHT. This confirms that Tg is an excellent substrate for endonuclease III. Fpg- mediated cleavage of the 5-OHC-containing oligonucleotide is processed at the same rate than endonuclease III. Furthermore, Fpg was found to have a little but relevant activity on DHT-containing oligonucleotide, thus broadening the substrate specificity of this enzyme to a new modified pyrimidine. While 5-OHC-containing oligonucleotides are cleaved by the two enzymes, no or a small amount of the modified base was found to be released, as determined by GC-MS. From these data it may be suggested that 5-OHC could be modified during its enzymatic excision. Finally, MALDI-MS analyses shed new light on the mechanism of action of endonuclease III: the molecular masses of the repaired fragments of 5-OHC- and DHT-containing oligonucleotides showed that endonuclease III cleaves the DNA backbone mainly through a hydrolytic process and that no beta-elimination product was detected.[1]


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