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

Formation of rolling-circle molecules during phi X174 complementary strand DNA replication.

The primosome is a mobile multiprotein priming apparatus that requires seven Escherichia coli proteins for assembly (the products of the dnaB, dnaC and dnaG genes; replication factor Y (protein n'); and proteins i, n, and n"). While the primosome is analagous to the phage T7 gene 4 protein and phage T4 gene 41/61 proteins in its DNA G-catalyzed priming function, its ability to act similarly also as a DNA helicase has remained equivocal. The role of the primosome in unwinding duplex DNA strands was investigated in the coliphage phi X174 SS(c)----replicative form DNA replication reaction in vitro, which requires the E. coli single-stranded DNA binding protein, the primosomal proteins, and the DNA polymerase III holoenzyme. Multigenome-length, linear, double-stranded DNA molecules were generated in this reaction, presumably via a rolling circle-type mechanism. Synthesis of these products required the presence of a helicase-catalyzed strand-displacement activity to permit multiple cycles of continuous complementary (-) strand synthesis. The participation of the primosome in this helicase activity was supported by demonstrating that other SS(c) DNA templates (G4 and alpha-3), which lack primosome assembly sites, failed to support significant linear multimer production and that replication of phi X174 with the general priming system (the DNA B and DNA G proteins and DNA polymerase III holoenzyme) resulted in a 13-fold lower rate of linear multimer synthesis.[1]


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