Letter | Published:

Positively supercoiled DNA in a virus-like particle of an archaebacterium

Nature volume 321, pages 256258 (15 May 1986) | Download Citation

Subjects

Abstract

The topological state of DNA is of importance in a variety of essential biological events1–4. Covalently closed circular DNA duplexes isolated from eukaryotic cells and their viruses, as well as from eubacteria and their bacteriophages are, without exception, negatively supercoiled. Little is known about the topological state of the DNA in archaebacteria, a group of organisms distinct from both ekaryotes and eubacteria5, but recently an ATP-dependent DNA topoisomerase has been isolated from the archaebacterium Sulfolobus acidocaldarius. This enzyme, termed ‘reverse gyrase’, converts relaxed or negatively supercoiled DNA into positively supercoiled forms in vitro6–9. It is not a gyrase-like type II topoisomerase, as initially reported9, but an ATP-dependent type I enzyme7,8. The function of this enzyme in vivo has not been established, largely because of the lack of data on the topological state of Sulfolobus DNA. Here we show that DNA exists in a positively superhelical state in the genome of the virus-like particle SSV-1, present in Sulfolobus.

Access optionsAccess options

Rent or Buy article

Get time limited or full article access on ReadCube.

from$8.99

All prices are NET prices.

References

  1. 1.

    Ann. Rev. Biochem. 54, 665–697 (1985).

  2. 2.

    Microbiol. Rev. 48, 273–289 (1984).

  3. 3.

    , & Cell 37, 33–41 (1984).

  4. 4.

    , & Cell 31, 35–42 (1982).

  5. 5.

    & Proc. natn. Acad. Sci. U.S.A. 74, 5088–5090 (1977).

  6. 6.

    , & J. molec. Biol. 179, 559–563 (1984).

  7. 7.

    , , , & EMBO J. 4, 2123–2128 (1985).

  8. 8.

    & EMBO J. 4, 2705–2710 (1985).

  9. 9.

    & Nature 309, 677–681 (1984).

  10. 10.

    et al. EMBO J. 3, 2165–2168 (1984).

  11. 11.

    et al. System. appl. Microbiol. 7 (in the press).

  12. 12.

    , & EMBO J. 1, 1035–1038 (1982).

  13. 13.

    & Proc. natn. Acad. Sci. U.S.A. 80, 6206–6210 (1983).

  14. 14.

    J. molec. Biol. 185, 51–63 (1985).

  15. 15.

    Biochem. J. 231, 185–188 (1985).

  16. 16.

    , & in Molecular Cloning, 90–91 (Cold Spring Harbor Laboratory, New York, (1982).

  17. 17.

    , , , & Nucleic Acids Res. 11, 1050–1075 (1983).

  18. 18.

    & Biochemistry 15, 4638–4642 (1976).

Download references

Author information

Author notes

    • Patrick Forterre

    Laboratoire de Biologie Moléculaire de la Réplication, Institut de Recherche sur le Cancer, BP no. 8, 94802 Villejuif Cedex, France

    • Wolf-Dieter Reiter

    Max-Planck-Institut für Biochemie, 8033 Martinsried, FRG

Affiliations

  1. Laboratoire d'Enzymologie des Acides Nucléiques, Université Pierre et Marie Curie, UA 554 CNRS, 96 Bd Raspail, 75006 Paris, France

    • Marc Nadal
    • , Gilles Mirambeau
    • , Patrick Forterre
    • , Wolf-Dieter Reiter
    •  & Michel Duguet

Authors

  1. Search for Marc Nadal in:

  2. Search for Gilles Mirambeau in:

  3. Search for Patrick Forterre in:

  4. Search for Wolf-Dieter Reiter in:

  5. Search for Michel Duguet in:

About this article

Publication history

Received

Accepted

Published

DOI

https://doi.org/10.1038/321256a0

Comments

By submitting a comment you agree to abide by our Terms and Community Guidelines. If you find something abusive or that does not comply with our terms or guidelines please flag it as inappropriate.