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

A comparative evaluation of methods for isolation of RNA-directed DNA polymerase from cells in a reconstituted system.

We have compared the relative merits of several procedures for the isolation of RNA-directed DNA polymerase (EC from cells using a reconsituted model system consisting of a mixture of woolly monkey (simian) sarcoma virus and a cultured human lymphoblastoid cell line, NC-37. When the cell-virus mixture was gently disrupted and fractionated by differential centrifugation, most of the added polymerase was recovered associated with a particulate fraction obtained from the post-mitochondrial supernatant. Purification of the polymerase was best achieved starting from this fraction. The particulate fraction itself can be purified by gel filtration through a Sepharose 2 B column. This procedure did not significantly alter the composition of viral and cellular DNA polymerases. Whereas as little as 7.5 - 10(5) viral particles were sufficient for the detection of RNA-directed DNA polymerase activity, a minimum of about 10(11) particles were necessary for the isolation and unequivocal characterization of the enzyme from the cell-virus mixture by subcellular fractionation and chromatographic separation from cellular DNA polymerases. Purified RNA-directed DNA polymerase had the same primer-template characteristics, sedimentation properties, and immunological cross reactivity as the enzyme purified from density gradient-banded virions of simian sarcoma virus. Methods involving total extraction of the cell-virus mixture either by repeated freezing and thawing followed by detergent treatment or by Dounce homogenization and treatment with high salt and detergent failed to provide RNA-directed DNA polymerase free of cellular DNA polymerases. Because of this, low levels of cellular RNA-directed DNA polymerase may be missed when these approaches are used.[1]


  1. A comparative evaluation of methods for isolation of RNA-directed DNA polymerase from cells in a reconstituted system. Allaudeen, H.S., Sarngadharan, M.G., Gallo, R.C. Biochim. Biophys. Acta (1976) [Pubmed]
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