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

Reverse transcriptase activity innate to DNA polymerase I and DNA topoisomerase I proteins of Streptomyces telomere complex.

Replication of Streptomyces linear chromosomes and plasmids proceeds bidirectionally from a central origin, leaving recessed 5' termini that are extended by a telomere binding complex. This complex contains both a telomere-protecting terminal protein (Tpg) and a telomere-associated protein that interacts with Tpg and the DNA ends of linear Streptomyces replicons. By using histidine-tagged telomere-associated protein (Tap) as a scaffold, we identified DNA polymerase (PolA) and topoisomerase I (TopA) proteins as other components of the Streptomyces telomere complex. Biochemical characterization of these proteins indicated that both PolA and TopA exhibit highly efficient reverse transcriptase ( RT) activity in addition to their predicted functions. Although RT activity innate to other DNA-dependent DNA polymerases has been observed previously, its occurrence in a topoisomerase is unprecedented. Deletion mapping and sequence analysis showed that the RT activity of Streptomcyces TopA resides in a peptide region containing motifs that are absent from most bacterial topoisomerases but are highly conserved in a novel subfamily of eubacterial topoisomerases found largely in Actinobacteria. Within one of these motifs, and essential to the RT function of Streptomyces TopA, is an Asp-Asp doublet sequence required also for the RT activities of human immunodeficiency virus and eukaryotic cell telomerases.[1]


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