Sep 25, 1989

Number and distribution of methylphosphonate linkages in oligodeoxynucleotides affect exo- and endonuclease sensitivity and ability to form RNase H substrates

Nucleic Acids Research
R S QuartinJ G Wetmur


Oligodeoxynucleotides with different arrangements of methylphosphonate linkages were examined for nuclease sensitivity in vitro, stability in tissue culture, and ability to form RNase H-sensitive substrates with complementary RNA. After nuclease treatment, resistance was demonstrated by the ability to alter the electrophoretic mobility of a labeled complementary phosphodiester oligodeoxynucleotide. Both 5'- and 3'-exonuclease activities were retarded by methylphosphonate linkages. Methylphosphonate-containing oligodeoxynucleotides with 1-5 adjacent phosphodiester linkages were tested as substrates for the endonucleases DNase I and DNase II. The results indicated that a span of three or fewer contiguous internal phosphodiester linkages led to the greatest resistance to endonuclease. However, in serum-supplemented culture medium half-lives of these oligodeoxynucleotides were independent of the number of contiguous phosphodiester linkages. Methylphosphonate-containing oligodeoxynucleotides were hybridized to RNA runoff transcripts and tested as substrates for RNase H. The results indicated that a span of three internal phosphodiester linkages in the oligodeoxynucleotide was necessary and sufficient to direct cleavage of the RNA in...Continue Reading

  • References17
  • Citations37
  • References17
  • Citations37


Mentioned in this Paper

Deoxyribonuclease I
Structure-Activity Relationship
Cytokinesis of the Fertilized Ovum
Spleen exonuclease
Complementary RNA
Substrate Specificity
Deoxyribonuclease I Activity

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