Novel Method for Quantifying Radiation-Induced Single-Strand-Break Yields in Plasmid DNA Highlights 10-Fold Discrepancy
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CitationBalagurumoorthy, Pichumani, S. James Adelstein, and Amin I. Kassis. 2011. “Novel Method for Quantifying Radiation-Induced Single-Strand-Break Yields in Plasmid DNA Highlights 10-Fold Discrepancy.” Analytical Biochemistry 417 (2): 242–46. https://doi.org/10.1016/j.ab.2011.06.023.
AbstractThe widely used agarose gel electrophoresis method for assessing radiation-induced single-strand-break (SSB) yield in plasmid DNA involves measurement of the fraction of relaxed-circular (C) form that migrates independently from the intact supercoiled (SC) form. We rationalized that this method may underestimate the SSB yield since the position of the relaxed-circular form is not altered when the number of SSB per DNA molecule is >1. To overcome this limitation, we have developed a novel method that directly probes and quantifies SSBs. Supercoiled (3)H-pUC19 plasmid samples were irradiated with gamma-rays, alkali-denatured, dephosphorylated, and kinated with gamma-[(32)P]ATP, and the DNA-incorporated (33)P activities were used to quantify the SSB yields per DNA molecule, employing a standard curve generated using DNA molecules containing a known number of SSBs. The same irradiated samples were analyzed by agarose gel and SSB yields were determined by conventional methods. Comparison of the data demonstrated that the mean SSB yield per plasmid DNA molecule of [21.2 +/- 0.59] x 10(-2) Gy(-1) as measured by direct probing is similar to 10-fold higher than that obtained from conventional gel-based methods. These findings imply that the SSB yields inferred from agarose gels need reevaluation, especially when they were utilized in the determination of radiation risk.
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