We have used flow linear dichroism (LD) and light scattering at 90 degrees to study the condensation of both DNA and calf thymus chromatin induced by spermine, triamines NH3+(CH2)iNH+(CH2)jNH3+, designated as much less than i, j much greater than: much less than 3, 4 much greater than (spermidine), much less than 3, 3 much greater than, much less than 2, 3 much greater than, much less than 2, 2 much greater than; the diamines putrescine and cadaverine and MgCl2. It is found that the different polyamines affected DNA and chromatin in a similar way. The degree of compaction of the chromatin fibers induced by spermine, triamines except much less than 2, 2 much greater than and Mg2+ has been found to be identical. The triamine much less than 2, 2 much greater than and the diamines studied do not condense either chromatin of DNA. Such a big difference in the action of the triamines indicates that not only the charge, but also the structure of the polycations are important for their interactions with DNA and chromatin. The stoichiometry of polyamine binding to chromatin at which condensation occurred is found to be 2 polyamine molecules per DNA helical turn. Polyamines are supposed to bind to the exposed sites of core DNA every 10 b.p. The extent of DNA phosphate neutralization by the histones is estimated to be about 55%. It has been shown that a mixture of mono- and multivalent cations affected DNA and chromatin condensation competitively and not synergistically, as claimed in a recent report by Sen and Crothers.
|Number of pages||11|
|Publication status||Published - Sep 1987|
ASJC Scopus subject areas
- Molecular Biology