A biochemical method for increasing the size of deletion mutations in simian virus 40 DNA

Thomas Shenk

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13 Scopus citations


A biochemical procedure has been developed for increasing the size of deletion mutations in closed-circular, double-stranded DNA. Specifically, the deletion in a simian virus 40 (SV40) mutant (dl892), a viable deletion mutant lacking about 35 base-pairs at 0.675 to 0.68 SV40 map units, has been enlarged to produce a series of new mutants lacking from 45 to 90 base-pairs. To enlarge the deletion, the following steps were involved: mutant and wild-type SV40 DNAs were cleaved with the EcoRI restriction endonuclease to form full-length linear molecules, and then they were mixed, denatured and annealed to reform duplex structures. The linear heteroduplex DNAs were re-circularized by treatment with DNA ligase. These closed-circular molecules, half of which contain a small deletion loop at 0.675 to 0.68 map units, were treated with S1 endonuclease, which cleaves at the site of the deletion loops to produce linear molecules with ends at 0.675 to 0.68 map units. Mutants containing enlarged deletions were obtained by infecting permissive monkey kidney cells with the linear DNA. The location of the enlarged deletion in each mutant was compared to that of the parental mutant, dl892. One end of the parental deletion (at about 0.675 map units) remained essentially unmoved; the deletions were enlarged almost entirely in the opposite direction. Since these mutants were all selected for viability, 0.675 map units very likely marks the boundary between a region of the genome previously shown to contain non-essential sequences (from 0.675 to about 0.74 map units) and a portion of the genome required for lytic growth.

Original languageEnglish (US)
Pages (from-to)503-515
Number of pages13
JournalJournal of Molecular Biology
Issue number3
StatePublished - Jul 5 1977

All Science Journal Classification (ASJC) codes

  • Structural Biology
  • Molecular Biology


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