Complex between a Multicrossover DNA Nanostructure, PX-DNA, and T7 Endonuclease I

Megan Kizer, Ian D. Huntress, Benjamin D. Walcott, Keith Fraser, Christopher Bystroff, Xing Wang

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review


Paranemic crossover DNA (PX-DNA) is a four-stranded multicrossover structure that has been implicated in recombination-independent recognition of homology. Although existing evidence has suggested that PX is the DNA motif in homologous pairing (HP), this conclusion remains ambiguous. Further investigation is needed but will require development of new tools. Here, we report characterization of the complex between PX-DNA and T7 endonuclease I (T7endoI), a junction-resolving protein that could serve as the prototype of an anti-PX ligand (a critical prerequisite for the future development of such tools). Specifically, nuclease-inactive T7endoI was produced and its ability to bind to PX-DNA was analyzed using a gel retardation assay. The molar ratio of PX to T7endoI was determined using gel electrophoresis and confirmed by the Hill equation. Hydroxyl radical footprinting of T7endoI on PX-DNA is used to verify the positive interaction between PX and T7endoI and to provide insight into the binding region. Cleavage of PX-DNA by wild-type T7endoI produces DNA fragments, which were used to identify the interacting sites on PX for T7endoI and led to a computational model of their interaction. Altogether, this study has identified a stable complex of PX-DNA and T7endoI and lays the foundation for engineering an anti-PX ligand, which can potentially assist in the study of molecular mechanisms for HP at an advanced level.

Original languageEnglish (US)
Pages (from-to)1332-1342
Number of pages11
Issue number10
StatePublished - Mar 12 2019
Externally publishedYes

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • Biochemistry


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