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A new class of DNA bisintercalators is reported in which phenanthridinium or acridinium rings are connected by rigid and extended linkers of varied length. Cross-linking of DNA by bisintercalation is inferred from the unwinding and folding of linear DNA induced by the compound; after ligation and removal of the bisintercalator, superhelical circles, catenanes, and knots that bear an imprint of the bisintercalator are observed. These novel bisintercalators are of interest because they can be used to probe the organization of DNA in three-dimensional space, especially near sites of replication, recombination, or topoisomerase action, where two duplexes must be in close proximity.


Journal article



Publication Date





842 - 849


Acridines, DNA, Indicators and Reagents, Intercalating Agents, Ligands, Magnetic Resonance Spectroscopy, Models, Structural, Molecular Structure, Phenanthridines, Plasmids, Structure-Activity Relationship