‘Square’ four-stranded DNA structure found in cells

A Paper in Nature Chemistry this week reports the first observation of a G-quadruplex structure of DNA in cells. Nature News has a summary of the discovery that hints at the possibility that these DNA structures may have important biological functions.

A G-quadruplex comprises four guanines from different places along a G-rich strand held together by a special type of hydrogen bonding to form a compact square structure that interrupts the DNA helix.

In a paper published online today in Nature Chemistry, researchers led by Shankar Balasubramanian at the University of Cambridge, UK, provide strong evidence that G-quadruplexes do occur in cells.

For those without subscription access, the Nature Chemistry paper is available for free for the rest of this week.

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