Biophysics of structure and mechanism

, Volume 10, Issue 3, pp 121–128 | Cite as

Isoelectric characteristics and the secondary structure of some nucleic acids

  • G. V. Sherbet
  • M. S. Lakshmi
  • F. Cajone


The isoelectric characteristics of some nucleic acid preparations from rat liver have been examined. 10S and 4S RNA species and SV-DNA were found to have isoelectric points of 5.2, 6.0–6.7, and 4.35 respectively. The molecular charge ratios (net negative charge/nucleotide) were calculated. Using SV-DNA as a standard, these isoelectric characteristics and charge ratios have been interpreted as indicating that the 10S and 4S RNAs have 35 and 56% of the molecules involved in secondary structure.

Key words

Nucleic acids Isoelectric characteristics Secondary structure 


Unable to display preview. Download preview PDF.

Unable to display preview. Download preview PDF.


  1. Clauwaert J, Stockx J (1968) Interactions of polynucleotides and their components. I. Dissociation constants of the bases and their derivatives. Z Naturforsch 23B: 25–32Google Scholar
  2. Clementi E (1983) Structure of water and counter ions for nucleic acids in solution. In: Clementi E, Sarna RH (eds) Structure and dynamics: Nucleic acids and proteins. Academic Press, New York, pp 321–364Google Scholar
  3. Drysdale JW, Righetti PG (1972) Fractionation of nucleic acids by isoelectric focusing. Biochemistry 11: 4044–4052Google Scholar
  4. Drysdale JW, Shafritz DA (1975) Fractionation of nucleic acids by gel electrofocusing: Multiple forms of tRNA and globin mRNA. In: Righetti PG (ed) Progress in isoelectric focusing and isotachophoresis. North Holland, Amsterdam, pp 293–306Google Scholar
  5. Fox DJ, Shugar D (1952) Spectrophotometric studies of nucleic acid derivatives and related compounds as a function of pH. II. Natural and synthetic pyrimidine nucleosides. Biochim Biophys Acta 9: 369–384Google Scholar
  6. Fox JJ, Codington JF, Yung NC, Kaplom L, Lampen JO (1958) Pyrimidine nucleosides. IV. The synthesis of 1-Β-D-Lyxofuranosylthymine. J Am Chem Soc 80: 5155–5160Google Scholar
  7. Hobart MJ (1975) Clues to protein structures from isoelectric focusing. In: Arbuthnott JP, Beeley JA (eds) Isoelectric focusing. Butterworths, London, pp 275–280Google Scholar
  8. Quigley GJ, Wang AHJ, Seaman NC, Suddath FL, Rich A, Sussman JL, Kim SH (1975) Hydrogen bonding in yeast phenylalanine transfer RNA. Proc Natl Acad Sci USA 72: 4866–4870Google Scholar
  9. Rich A, Rajbhandary VL (1976) Transfer RNA: molecular structure sequence and properties. Annu Rev Biochem 45: 805–866Google Scholar
  10. Robertus JD, Ladner JE, Finch JT, Rhodes D, Brown RS, Clark BFC, Klug A (1974) Structure of yeast phenylalanine tRNA at 3å resolution. Nature 250: 546–551Google Scholar
  11. Sherbet GV (1978) The biophysical characterisation of the cell surface. Academic Press, LondonGoogle Scholar
  12. Sherbet GV, Lakshmi MS (1973) Characterisation of Escherichia coli cell surface by isoelectric equilibrium analysis. Biochim Biophys Acta 298: 50–58Google Scholar
  13. Sherbet GV, Lakshmi MS, Rao KV (1972) Characterisation of ionogenic groups and estimation of the net negative electric charge on the surface of cells using natural pH gradients. Exp Cell Res 70: 113–123Google Scholar
  14. Shugar D, Fox DJ (1952) Spectrophotometric studies of nucleic acid derivatives and related compounds as a function of pH. I. Pyrimidines. Biochim Biophys Acta 9: 199–218Google Scholar
  15. Simoncsits A, Brownlee GG, Brown RS, Rubin JR, Guilley H (1977) New rapid gel sequencing method for RNA. Nature 269: 833–883Google Scholar
  16. Wempen J, Duschinsky R, Kaplom L, Fox JJ (1961) Thiation of nucleosides. IV. The synthesis of 5-fluoro-2′-deoxycytidine and related compounds. J Am Chem Soc 83: 4755–4766Google Scholar
  17. Ziegler RS, Salomon R, Dingman CW, Peacock AC (1972) Role of base composition in the electrophoresis of microbial and crab DNA in polyacrylamide gels. Nature (New Biol) 238: 65–69Google Scholar

Copyright information

© Springer-Verlag 1983

Authors and Affiliations

  • G. V. Sherbet
    • 1
  • M. S. Lakshmi
    • 1
  • F. Cajone
    • 2
  1. 1.Cancer Research UnitUniversity of Newcastle upon Tyne, The Royal Victoria InfirmaryNewcastle upon TyneEngland
  2. 2.Istituto di Patologia Generale, Centro di Patologia del C.N.R.Universitá degli StudiMilanoItalia

Personalised recommendations