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DNA Interstrand Cross-Linking upon Irradiation of Aryl Halide C‑Nucleotides

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journal contribution
posted on 17.12.2015, 00:55 by Dianjie Hou, Marc M. Greenberg
γ-Radiolysis kills cells by damaging DNA via radical processes. Many of the radical pathways are O2 dependent, which results in a reduction in the cytotoxicity of ionizing radiation in hypoxic tumor cells. Consequently, there is a need for chemical agents that increase DNA damage by ionizing radiation under O2-deficient conditions. Modified nucleotides that are incorporated in DNA and produce highly reactive σ-radicals are useful as radiosensitizing agents. Aryl halide C-nucleotides (46) were incorporated into oligonucleotides by solid-phase synthesis. Duplex DNA containing 46 forms interstrand cross-links upon γ-radiolysis under anaerobic conditions or UV irradiation. Deep Vent (exo) DNA polymerase accepted the nucleotide triphosphate of C-nucleotide 6 as a substrate and preferentially incorporated it opposite pyrimidines, but no further extension was detected. Incorporation of 6 in extended products by Deep Vent (exo) during PCR or by Sequenase during copying of single stranded DNA plasmid was undetectable. Aryl halide nucleotide analogues that produce DNA interstrand cross-links under anaerobic conditions upon irradiation are potentially useful as radiosensitizing agents, but further research is needed to identify molecules that are incorporated by DNA polymerases and do not block further polymerization for this approach to be useful in cells.