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FEBS Lett. 2004 Jul 30;571(1-3):112-8.

Inhibition of DNA synthesis by K+-stabilised G-quadruplex promotes allelic preferential amplification.

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Departamento de Bioquímica y Biología Molecular, Facultad de Biología, Universidad de Santiago de Compostela, 15782 Santiago de Compostela, Galicia, Spain.


PCR preferential amplification consists of the inefficient amplification of one allele in a heterozygous sample. Here, we report the isolation of a GC-rich human minisatellite, MsH43, that undergoes allelic preferential amplification during PCR. This effect requires the existence of a (TGGGGC)(4) motif that is able to form a G-quadruplex in the presence of K(+). This structure interferes with the DNA synthesis of the alleles harbouring this motif during PCR The present results are the first demonstration that the formation of G-quadruplex can be one of the mechanisms involved in some kinds of preferential amplification.

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