Relaxed specificity of prokaryotic DNA methyltransferases results in DNA site-specific modification of RNA/DNA heteroduplexes.

Abstract:

:RNA/DNA hybrid duplexes regularly occur in nature, for example in transcriptional R loops. Their susceptibility to modification by DNA-specific or RNA-specific enzymes is, thus, a biologically relevant question, which, in addition, has possible biotechnological implications. In this study, we investigated the activity of four isospecific DNA methyltransferases (M.EcoVIII, M.LlaCI, M.HindIII, M.BstZ1II) toward an RNA/DNA duplex carrying one 5'-AAGCUU-3'/3'-TTCGAA-5' target sequence. The analyzed enzymes belong to the β-group of adenine N6-methyltransferases and recognize the palindromic DNA sequence 5'-AAGCTT-3'/3'-TTCGAA-5'. Under standard conditions, none of these isospecific enzymes could detectibly methylate the RNA/DNA duplex. However, the addition of agents that generally relax specificity, such as dimethyl sulfoxide (DMSO) and glycerol, resulted in substantial methylation of the RNA/DNA duplex by M.EcoVIII and M.LlaCI. Only the DNA strand of the RNA/DNA duplex was methylated. The same was not observed for M.HindIII or M.BstZ1II. This is, to our knowledge, the first report that demonstrates such activity by prokaryotic DNA methyltransferases. Possible applications of these findings in a laboratory practice are also discussed.

journal_name

J Appl Genet

authors

Wons E,Mruk I,Kaczorowski T

doi

10.1007/s13353-015-0279-4

subject

Has Abstract

pub_date

2015-11-01 00:00:00

pages

539-546

issue

4

eissn

1234-1983

issn

2190-3883

pii

10.1007/s13353-015-0279-4

journal_volume

56

pub_type

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