Research describes new techniques to study protein-DNA interactions

June 10, 2013

Work undertaken at the John Innes Centre describes new Surface Plasmon Resonance (SPR) protocols to identify and footprint protein-DNA interactions in a cost effective and semi-automated way.

This work, published in Nucleic Acids Research, illustrates the application of these methods by locating specific binding sites for a bacterial transcription factor and accurately defining the protein footprints on the DNA. These observations were then verified by determining the structure of a representative protein-DNA complex using X-ray crystallography.

These new methods will appeal to those investigating protein-nucleic acid interactions as an alternative to traditional methods, such as electrophoretic mobility shift assays and DNase I footprinting.

The SPR protocols are based on an indirect DNA capture method that has been termed ReDCaT (Re-usable DNA Capture Technique). ReDCaT is now being offered as a service by Inspiralis, a company founded in 1995 by John Innes Centre researchers.

Explore further: DNA with a twist: New company to search for cancer drugs and antibiotics

More information: Stevenson, C. et al. (2013). Investigation of DNA sequence recognition by a streptomycete MarR family transcriptional regulator through surface plasmon resonance and X-ray crystallography, Nucleic Acids Research.

Related Stories

Predicting protein binding sites on DNA

October 15, 2012

In silico prediction of protein folding has the potential to reveal the specificity of a given protein sequence for DNA. Such methods are particularly promising as they could open the road to the rational design of novel ...

Unspooling DNA from nucleosomal disks

May 23, 2013

The tight wrapping of genomic DNA around nucleosomes in the cell nucleus makes it unavailable for gene expression. A team of Ludwig-Maximilians-Universitaet (LMU) in Munich now describes a mechanism that allows chromosomal ...

Recommended for you

Moonlighting molecules: Finding new uses for old enzymes

November 27, 2015

A collaboration between the University of Cambridge and MedImmune, the global biologics research and development arm of AstraZeneca, has led researchers to identify a potentially significant new application for a well-known ...

A new form of real gold, almost as light as air

November 25, 2015

Researchers at ETH Zurich have created a new type of foam made of real gold. It is the lightest form ever produced of the precious metal: a thousand times lighter than its conventional form and yet it is nearly impossible ...

Getting under the skin of a medieval mystery

November 23, 2015

A simple PVC eraser has helped an international team of scientists led by bioarchaeologists at the University of York to resolve the mystery surrounding the tissue-thin parchment used by medieval scribes to produce the first ...


Please sign in to add a comment. Registration is free, and takes less than a minute. Read more

Click here to reset your password.
Sign in to get notified via email when new comments are made.