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ATP-dependent restriction enzymes

Rao, Desirazu N and Saha, Swati and Krishnamurthy, Vinita (2000) ATP-dependent restriction enzymes. In: Progress in Nucleic Acid Research and Molecular Biology, 64 . pp. 1-63.

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Abstract

The phenomenon of restriction and modification (R-M) was first observed in the course of studies on bacteriophages in the early 1950s. It was only in the 1960s that work of Arber and colleagues provided a molecular explanation for the host specificity. DNA restriction and modification enzymes are responsible for the host-specific barriers to interstrain and interspecies transfer of genetic information that have been observed in a variety of bacterial cell types. R-M systems comprise an endonuclease and a methyltransferase activity. They serve to protect bacterial cells against bacteriophage infection, because incoming foreign DNA is specifically cleaved by the restriction enzyme if it contains the recognition sequence of the endonuclease. The DNA is protected from cleavage by a specific methylation within the recognition sequence, which is introduced by the methyltransferase. Classic R-M systems are now divided into three types on the basis of enzyme complexity, cofactor requirements, and position of DNA cleavage, although new systems are being discovered that do not fit readily into this classification. This review concentrates on multisubunit, multifunctional ATP-dependent restriction enzymes. A growing number of these enzymes are being subjected to biochemical and genetic studies that, when combined with ongoing structural analyses, promise to provide detailed models for mechanisms of DNA recognition and catalysis. It is now clear that DNA cleavage by these enzymes involves highly unusual modes of interaction between the enzymes and their substrates. These unique features of mechanism pose exciting questions and in addition have led to the suggestion that these enzymes may have biological functions beyond that of restriction and modification. The purpose of this review is to describe the exciting developments in our understanding of how the ATP-dependent restriction enzymes recognize specific DNA sequences and cleave or modify DNA.

Item Type: Journal Article
Additional Information: Copyright of this article belongs to Elsevier.
Department/Centre: Division of Biological Sciences > Biochemistry
Date Deposited: 25 Jul 2008
Last Modified: 27 Aug 2008 13:38
URI: http://eprints.iisc.ernet.in/id/eprint/15258

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