Cytosine deamination in mismatched base pairs.
The rate of deamination of cytosine in mismatched base pairs has been determined. Incubation of M13mp2 nicked heteroduplex DNA molecules containing T.C or C.C mispairs in the lacZ alpha-complementation gene results in deamination of cytosine to uracil, producing T.U or C.U mispairs. Strands which have undergone deamination at the target site to produce uracil will yield dark blue plaque revertants, while all other strands yield faint blue or colorless plaque phenotypes upon transfection of an ung- alpha-complementation Escherichia coli host strain. Rate constants were calculated from the reversion frequencies for several different heteroduplexes incubated at either 60 or 37 degrees C. For the 60 degrees C incubations, the hydrolytic deamination rate constants for mispairs in three different local sequence environments ranged from 8 x 10(-10) to 40 x 10(-10) s-1. For incubations at 37 degrees C, the rate constants were between 0.4 x 10(-10) and 1.3 x 10(-10) sec-1. At both temperatures and for all mispairs, these rate constants are significantly greater than deamination rate constants in properly matched Watson-Crick G.C base pairs and are similar to those constants determined for cytosine deamination in single-stranded DNA. Since deamination most likely occurs via a single-stranded intermediate, the data suggest that, at 37 degrees C, the T.C and C.C mispairs exhibit from 20% to 100% single-stranded character. We conclude that cytosine residues involved in a mispair in DNA are 1-2 orders of magnitude more prone to deaminate to uracil than are cytosines in double-stranded DNA.(ABSTRACT TRUNCATED AT 250 WORDS)
Frederico, LA; Kunkel, TA; Shaw, BR
Volume / Issue
Start / End Page
Electronic International Standard Serial Number (EISSN)
International Standard Serial Number (ISSN)
Digital Object Identifier (DOI)