A universal description for the experimental behavior of salt-(in)dependent oligocation-induced DNA condensation
Berezhnoy, Nikolay V.
Eom, Khee Dong
Tam, James P.
Date of Issue2009
School of Biological Sciences
We report a systematic study of the condensation of plasmid DNA by oligocations with variation of the charge, Z, from +3 to +31. The oligocations include a series of synthetic linear ε-oligo(l-lysines), (denoted εKn, n = 3–10, 31; n is the number of lysines equal to the ligand charge) and branched α-substituted homologues of εK10: εYK10, εLK10 (Z = +10); εRK10, εYRK10 and εLYRK10 (Z = +20). Data were obtained by light scattering, UV absorption monitored precipitation assay and isothermal titration calorimetry in a wide range concentrations of DNA and monovalent salt (KCl, CKCl). The dependence of EC50 (ligand concentration at the midpoint of DNA condensation) on CKCl shows the existence of a salt-independent regime at low CKCl and a salt-dependent regime with a steep rise of EC50 with increase of CKCl. Increase of the ligand charge shifts the transition from the salt-independent to salt-dependent regime to higher CKCl. A novel and simple relationship describing the EC50 dependence on DNA concentration, charge of the ligand and the salt-dependent dissociation constant of the ligand–DNA complex is derived. For the ε-oligolysines εK3–εK10, the experimental dependencies of EC50 on CKCl and Z are well-described by an equation with a common set of parameters. Implications from our findings for understanding DNA condensation in chromatin are discussed.
Nucleic acids research
© 2009 The Author(s) (Published by Oxford University Press). This paper was published in Nucleic Acids Research and is made available as an electronic reprint (preprint) with permission of The Author(s) (Published by Oxford University Press). The paper can be found at the following official DOI: [http://dx.doi.org/10.1093/nar/gkp683]. One print or electronic copy may be made for personal use only. Systematic or multiple reproduction, distribution to multiple locations via electronic or other means, duplication of any material in this paper for a fee or for commercial purposes, or modification of the content of the paper is prohibited and is subject to penalties under law.