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Nat Struct Mol Biol. 2008 Aug;15(8):768-74. doi: 10.1038/nsmb.1441. Epub 2008 Aug 5.

Visualizing one-dimensional diffusion of proteins along DNA.

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Department of Biological Sciences, 650 West 168th Street, New York, New York 10032, USA.


The ability of proteins to locate specific target sequences or structures among a vast excess of nonspecific DNA is a fundamental property that affects virtually all aspects of biology. Despite this importance, experimental methods have lagged behind the establishment of theoretical principles describing potential target location mechanisms. However, recent advances in single-molecule detection now allow direct visual observation of proteins diffusing along DNA. Here we present an overview of these new observations and discuss the advantages, limitations and future prospects for imaging the motion of proteins along DNA.

[Indexed for MEDLINE]

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