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Nucleic Acids Res. 1981 Jun 25;9(12):2643-58.

Sequence specific cleavage of DNA by micrococcal nuclease.


Micrococcal nuclease is shown to cleave DNA under conditions of partial digestion in a specific manner. Sequences of the type 5'CATA and 5'CTA are attacked preferentially, followed by exonucleolytic degradation at the newly generated DNA termini. GC-rich flanking sequences further increase the probability of initial attack. Unexpectedly, long stretches containing only A and T are spared by the nuclease. These results, which were obtained with spared by the nuclease. These results, which were obtained with mouse satellite DNA and two fragments from the plasmid pBR22, do not support the previous contention that it is the regions of high At-content which are initially cleaved by micrococcal nuclease. This specificity of micrococcal nuclease complicates its use in experiments intended to monitor the nucleoprotein structure of a DNA sequence in chromatin.

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