Use of Nucleic Acid Analogs for the Study of Nucleic Acid Interactions

  • Shu-ichi Nakano
    Faculty of Frontiers of Innovative Research in Science and Technology, Konan University, 7-1-20 Minatojima-Minamimachi, Chuo-ku, Kobe 650-0047, Japan
  • Masayuki Fujii
    Department of Environmental and Biological Chemistry, Kinki University, 11-6 Kayanomori, Iizuka, Fukuoka 820-8555, Japan
  • Naoki Sugimoto
    Faculty of Frontiers of Innovative Research in Science and Technology, Konan University, 7-1-20 Minatojima-Minamimachi, Chuo-ku, Kobe 650-0047, Japan

Abstract

<jats:p>Unnatural nucleosides have been explored to expand the properties and the applications of oligonucleotides. This paper briefly summarizes nucleic acid analogs in which the base is modified or replaced by an unnatural stacking group for the study of nucleic acid interactions. We also describe the nucleoside analogs of a base pair-mimic structure that we have examined. Although the base pair-mimic nucleosides possess a simplified stacking moiety of a phenyl or naphthyl group, they can be used as a structural analog of Watson-Crick base pairs. Remarkably, they can adopt two different conformations responding to their interaction energies, and one of them is the stacking conformation of the nonpolar aromatic group causing the site-selective flipping of the opposite base in a DNA double helix. The base pair-mimic nucleosides can be used to study the mechanism responsible for the base stacking and the flipping of bases out of a nucleic acid duplex.</jats:p>

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