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Proc Natl Acad Sci U S A. 1989 Sep;86(17):6469-73.

Mismatch-specific 3'----5' exonuclease associated with the mitochondrial DNA polymerase from Drosophila embryos.

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Department of Biochemistry, Michigan State University, East Lansing 48824.


The mitochondrial DNA polymerase from Drosophila embryos lacks dNTP turnover activity. However, a potent 3'----5' exonuclease activity can be detected by a specific assay in which the exonuclease excises mispaired nucleotides at the 3' termini of primed synthetic and natural DNA templates. The excision of a mispaired nucleotide occurs at a significantly greater rate than excision of a correctly paired nucleotide and, under conditions of DNA synthesis, hydrolysis of a mispaired terminal nucleotide occurs prior to primer extension. The 3'----5' exonuclease copurifies quantitatively with DNA polymerase gamma and cosediments with the nearly homogeneous enzyme under native conditions. These results suggest that the 3'----5' exonuclease provides a proofreading function to enhance the fidelity of DNA synthesis during Drosophila mitochondrial DNA replication.

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