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How environmental solution conditions determine the compaction velocity of single DNA molecules.

ABSTRACT: Understanding the mechanisms of DNA compaction is becoming increasingly important for gene therapy and nanotechnology DNA applications. The kinetics of the compaction velocity of single DNA molecules was studied using two non-protein condensation systems, poly(ethylene glycol) (PEG) with Mg(2+) for the polymer-salt-induced condensation system and spermine for the polyamine condensation system. The compaction velocities of single tandem ?-DNA molecules were measured at various PEG and spermine concentrations by video fluorescent microscopy. Single DNA molecules were observed using a molecular stretching technique in the microfluidic flow. The results show that the compaction velocity of a single DNA molecule was proportional to the PEG or spermine concentration to the power of a half. Theoretical considerations indicate that the compaction velocity is related to differences in the free energy of a single DNA molecule between the random coil and compacted states. In the compaction kinetics with PEG, acceleration of the compaction velocity occurred above the overlap concentration while considerable deceleration occurred during the coexistence state of the random coil and the compacted conformation. This study demonstrates the control factors of DNA compaction kinetics and contributes toward the understanding of the compaction mechanisms of non-protein DNA interactions as well as DNA-protein interactions in vivo.


PROVIDER: S-EPMC3245929 | BioStudies | 2012-01-01T00:00:00Z

REPOSITORIES: biostudies

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