Single-crystal analysis of DNA and RNA oligonucleotides and their complexes with drugs has provided a great deal of information concerning the structure and function of these molecules. Its success depends critically on the probability of obtaining suitable crystals, which so far appears to be not very high. In this paper we present a detailed view of the crystallization process and several representative examples of the crystallization of oligonucleotides. Special emphases are placed on two aspects, the materials and the techniques. The preparation, purity, and selection of sequences of oligonucleotides are discussed. Some important factors, such as metal ions, organic ions, pH, precipitants, and various additives, are evaluated. Two specific examples of crystallizing Z-DNA and the complexes between DNA and the antitumor drug nogalamycin are presented. Special techniques such as feeding, seeding, and crystal recycling are also described.
ASJC Scopus subject areas
- Molecular Biology
- Biochemistry, Genetics and Molecular Biology(all)