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Biochem Biophys Res Commun. 2006 Feb 3;340(1):90-4. Epub 2005 Dec 7.

A test of Chargaff's second rule.

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Vice Deanery of Genetics and Microbiology, Trinity College, Dublin, Ireland.


In 1968, Chargaff and his colleagues discovered a rule in Bacillus subtilis: in single stranded DNA, A=T and C=G. This rule has since been confirmed many times in other bacterial and eukaryotic genomes. To the best of our knowledge, this rule has not been tested before in either single stranded DNA or RNA genomes. Over 3400 genomic sequences were examined here and included for the first time both double and single stranded DNA and RNA genomes. We found that: (1) with the exception of the organellar DNA, this parity rule holds for all types of double stranded DNA genomes and (2) that this rule fails to hold for other types of genomes. The parity rule appears to be a selective force on genome evolution and codon use.

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