Faculty Works

Title

DNA-surfactant interactions: Coupled cooperativity in ligand binding leads to duplex stabilization

Document Type

Article

Publication Date

9-16-1999

Abstract

The cooperative nature of interaction of cationic surfactants with short oligonucleotides leading to eventual stabilization of DNA duplexes is demonstrated. At submicellar concentrations and DNA:surfactant charge ratios of 0.2 to 0.8, the association of single chain (CTAB) and double chain (DOTAP) surfactants to oligonucleotides is initiated by electrostatic interaction of cationic ligands with polyanionic DNA that aligns the surfactant molecules on the DNA template. This is followed by binding of new surfactant ligands to the initial complex, driven cooperatively by the hydrophobic forces, leading to in situ formation of surfactant-bound and bare duplexes as separate species. These exhibit independent melting behaviour characterised by double transition in thermal UV profiles, with a higher T(m) for surfactant-DNA complexes. Understanding the cooperative binding of the cationic surfactants to the DNA described here may have implications for rational design of DNA binding drugs and DNA delivery systems.

Publication Title

Biochemical and Biophysical Research Communications

Start Page No.

41

End Page No.

46

ISSN

0006-291X

DOI

10.1006/bbrc.1999.1266

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