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Manipulating DNA Probe Presentation via Enzymatic Cleavage of Diluent Strands

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journal contribution
posted on 08.09.2008 by Christopher K. Tison, Valeria T. Milam
We previously reported a system for the controlled redispersion of DNA-linked aggregates using secondary, competitive hybridization events and found that complete redispersion is contingent upon dilution of the active 20 base-long probe strands with 20 base-long nonhybridizing strands. Here, to reduce the steric interference of nonhybridizing or diluent strands on probe activity, we investigate the effect of shorter diluent strands on the hybridization activity of immobilized probes using the following two approaches: (1) simultaneously coupling shorter diluent strands and longer probe strands to microspheres and (2) simultaneously coupling diluent and probe strands of the same base length to microspheres and then clipping diluent strands with the restriction endonuclease AluI. Results indicate that one can reduce the duplex density down by 50−70% of its initial value, depending on the location of the recognition motif along the hybridization segment. In addition, tighter control over the number of probe-target duplexes is achieved with the enzyme-based approach.