The optical anisotropy of chromatin with different length of the linker DNA isolated from a variety of sources (Friend erythroleukemia cells, calf thymus, hen erythrocytes and sea urchin sperm) has been studied in a large range of mono- and bivalent cations by the use of flow linear dichroism and electric dichroism. We have found that all chromatins studied displayed negative LD values in the range of 0.25 mM EDTA--2 mM NaCl and close positive values in the range of 2-100 mM NaCl. Mg2+ cations, in contrast to Na+ cations, induce optically isotropic chromatin fibers. All chromatin samples exhibit positive form effect amounting to 5-10% of LD amplitude observed at 260 nm. This form effect is determined by the anisotropic scattering of polarized light by single chromatin fibers. The conformational transition at 2 mM NaCl leads to the distortion of chromatin filament structure. The reversibility of this distortion depends on the length of the linker DNA--for chromatins with linker DNA 10-30 b.p. it is partially reversible, while for preparations with longer linker DNA it is irreversible. Relatively low electric fields do not have an effect on chromatin structure, while higher electric fields (more than 7 kV/cm) distort the structure of chromatin.
|Number of pages||11|
|Publication status||Published - Sep 1987|
ASJC Scopus subject areas
- Molecular Biology