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© 2015 Elsevier B.V. Deinococcus radiodurans (Dr) has a significantly more robust DNA repair response than Escherichia coli (Ec), which helps it survive extremely high doses of ionizing radiation and prolonged periods of desiccation. DrRecA protein plays an essential part in this DNA repair capability. In this study we directly compare the binding of DrRecA and EcRecA to the same set of short, defined single (ss) and double stranded (ds) DNA oligomers. In the absence of cofactors (ATPγS or ADP), DrRecA binds to dsDNA oligomers more than 20 fold tighter than EcRecA, and binds ssDNA up to 9 fold tighter. Binding to dsDNA oligomers in the absence of cofactor presumably predominantly monitors DNA end binding, and thus suggests a significantly higher affinity of DrRecA for ds breaks. Upon addition of ATPγS, this species-specific affinity difference is nearly abolished, as ATPγS significantly decreases the affinity of DrRecA for DNA. Other findings include that: (1) both proteins exhibit a dependence of binding affinity on the length of the ssDNA oligomer, but not the dsDNA oligomer; (2) the salt dependence of binding is modest for both species of RecA, and (3) in the absence of DNA, DrRecA produces significantly shorter and/or fewer free-filaments in solution than does EcRecA. The results suggest intrinsic biothermodynamic properties of DrRecA contribute directly to the more robust DNA repair capabilities of D. radiodurans.

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DNA Repair

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