Specific nucleotide binding and rebinding to individual DNA polymerase complexes captured on a nanopore.


Nanoscale pores are a tool for single molecule analysis of DNA or RNA processing enzymes. Monitoring catalytic activity in real time using this technique requires that these enzymes retain function while held atop a nanopore in an applied electric field. Using an alpha-hemolysin nanopore, we measured the dwell time for complexes of DNA with the Klenow fragment of Escherichia coli DNA polymerase I (KF) as a function of the concentration of deoxynucleoside triphosphate (dNTP) substrate. We analyzed these dwell time measurements in the framework of a two-state model for captured complexes (DNA-KF binary and DNA-KF-dNTP ternary states). Average nanopore dwell time increased without saturating as a function of correct dNTP concentration across 4 orders of magnitude. This arises from two factors that are proportional to dNTP concentration: (1) The fraction of complexes that are in the ternary state when initially captured predominantly affects dwell time at low dNTP concentrations. (2) The rate of binding and rebinding of dNTP to captured complexes affects dwell time at higher dNTP concentrations. Thus there are two regimes that display a linear relationship between average dwell time and dNTP concentration. The transition from one linear regime to the other occurs near the equilibrium dissociation constant (K(d)) for dNTP binding to KF-DNA complexes in solution. We conclude from the combination of titration experiments and modeling that DNA-KF complexes captured atop the nanopore retain iterative, sequence-specific dNTP binding, as required for catalysis and fidelity in DNA synthesis.



Nucleotide Incorporation, Structure and Structure/Function, Enzyme Substrate Interactions, Biotech Applications


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