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

Structural features of the UCCG and UGCG tetraloops in very short hairpins as evidenced by optical spectroscopy.

Structures of the UCCG and UGCG tetraloops formed in octamer ribonucleotidic hairpin sequences, i.e., 5'-r[GC(UCCG)GC]-3' and 5'-r[GC(UGCG)GC]-3', have been studied in aqueous solution by methods of optical spectroscopy. UV absorption melting profiles of these short hairpins, containing only two closing GC base pairs in the stem, are consistent with a monophasic, completely reversible order-to-disorder transition and clearly confirm their unusual structural stability (with Tm congruent with 50 degrees C). To establish structural characteristics of these tetraloops, Raman and FTIR spectroscopies have been used and vibrational conformation markers arising from the phosphate backbone and various nucleosides have been analyzed. They have been assigned on the basis of known unambiguous vibrational markers established for DNA and RNA chains. Surprisingly, they are easily transferable to short oligonucleotidic sequences. Intensities and wavenumbers of these conformation markers have been monitored in the 0-70 degrees C temperature range, i.e., in going from an ordered to a disordered structure. The main structural features of the UCCG and UGCG tetraloops are similar to those previously found in the UUCG and UACG tetraloops by means of NMR and vibrational spectroscopies, except those of the second nucleosides of the tetraloops (rC and rG, respectively) which adopt a 3'-endo/anti rather than a 2'-endo/anti conformation.[1]


  1. Structural features of the UCCG and UGCG tetraloops in very short hairpins as evidenced by optical spectroscopy. Abdelkafi, M., Leulliot, N., Baumruk, V., Bednárová, L., Turpin, P.Y., Namane, A., Gouyette, C., Huynh-Dinh, T., Ghomi, M. Biochemistry (1998) [Pubmed]
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