Solution structure of a short dna fragment studied by neutron scattering

H. Lederer, R. P. May, Jørgen Kjems, G. Baer, H. Heumann

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    The solution structure of a DNA fragment of 130 base pairs and known sequence has been investigated by neutron small-angle scattering. In 0.1 M NaCl, the overall structure of the DNA fragment which contains the strong promoter A1 of the Escherichia coli phage T7 agrees with that expected for B-DNA. The neutron scattering curve is well fitted by that of a rigid rod with a length of 44 nm and a diameter of 2 nm. The result were confirmed by quasi-elastic light scattering and analytical centrifugation. The neutron measurements in H2O and D2O buffer reveal a cross-sectional in homogeneity not detected by X-ray small-angle scattering. This inhomogeneity is caused by the hydration layer around the DNA core and not by the helical structure. The primary solvent shell has a density increased by at least 4-9% compared to bulk water.
    Original languageEnglish
    JournalEuropean Journal of Biochemistry
    Issue number1
    Pages (from-to)191-196
    Publication statusPublished - 1986


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