Immunochemical detection of sequence-specific modifications to DNA induced by UV light

Karl E. Herbert, Nalini Mistry, Helen R. Griffiths, Joseph Lunec

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review


Sequence specificity of antibodies to UV-damaged DNA has not been described previously. The antisera investigated here were specific for UV-modified DNA and were absolutely dependent upon the presence of thymine residues. Using a series of oligonucleotides in competition ELISA, increased inhibition was observed with increasing chain length of UV-polythymidylate. A minimum of three adjacent thymines was required for effective inhibition; alone, dimers of thymine were poor antigens. Although UV-irradiated poly(dC) was not antigenic, cytosines could partially replace thymines within the smallest effective epitope (T-T-T) with a high degree of sequence specificity, not previously described. The main epitope induced by UV was formed from adjacent thymines and either a 3' or a 5' pyrimidine.
Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)2517-2521
Number of pages5
Issue number11
Publication statusPublished - Nov 1994


  • sequence specificity
  • antibody
  • UV-damaged DNA
  • UV-modified DNA
  • DNA
  • UV
  • thymine
  • UV-polythymidylate
  • antigenic
  • cytosine
  • epitope


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