RNA-primed DNA synthesis: specific catalysis by HeLa cell DNA polymerase alpha.


We have analyzed and compared the responses of the three major HeLa ...
We have analyzed and compared the responses of the three major HeLa cell DNA polymerases (alpha, beta, and gamma) to a HeLa DNA template with short RNA or DNA primers hybridized to it. Only DNA polymerase alpha is able to synthesize DNA covalently bonded to the RNA primer via a 3' yields 5' phosphodiester bond. 32P transfer experiments showed that all combinations of ribo- and deoxyribonucleotides are represented in the RNA-DNA linkages but their distribution is nonrandom. The RNA-DNA linked molecules base-paired to a HeLa DNA template strand represent a possible "natural" in vitro primer-template for DNA polymerases and can be extended by all three DNA polymerases (alpha, beta, and gamma). These findings indicate that DNA polymerases beta and gamma are capable of DNA-primed but not RNA-PRIMED DNA synthesis, while DNA polymerase alpha is capable of both RNA-primed and DAN-primed DNA synthesis.



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