Secondary DNA structure analysis of the coding strand switch regions of five Leishmania major Friedlin chromosomes
As part of the EULEISH international genome project, a region of 74,674 nucleotides from chromosome 21 of Leishmania major Friedlin was subcloned and sequenced; and 31 new coding sequences were predicted. Of particular interest was a unique coding strand switching region covering 1.6 kb of DNA; and this was subjected to further investigation. Bioinformatic analysis of this region revealed an unusually high AT composition, a lack of putative hairpins and a strong curvature of the DNA in agreement with the structural characteristics of similar regions of other Leishmania chromosomes. These observations and a comparison with the secondary DNA structure of four other Leishmania chromosomes and chromosomes of different organisms could suggest a functional role of this region in transcription and mitotic division.
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