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Gene. 1997 Dec 5;203(1):43-9.

Site-specific cleavage of DNA-RNA hybrids by zinc finger/FokI cleavage domain fusions.

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Department of Environmental Health Sciences, The Johns Hopkins University, School of Hygiene and Public Health, Baltimore, MD 21205-2179, USA.


Zinc-finger proteins of the Cys2His2 type bind DNA-RNA hybrids with affinities comparable to those for DNA duplexes. Such zinc-finger proteins were converted into site-specific cleaving enzymes by fusing them to the FokI cleavage domain. The fusion proteins are active and under optimal conditions cleave DNA duplexes in a sequence-specific manner. These fusions also exhibit site-specific cleavage of the DNA strand within DNA-RNA hybrids albeit at a lower efficiency (approximately 50-fold) compared to the cleavage of the DNA duplexes. These engineered endonucleases represent the first of their kind in terms of their DNA-RNA cleavage properties, and they may have important biological applications.

[Indexed for MEDLINE]

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