Polyamides containing N-methylimidazole (Im) and N-methylpyrrole (Py) amino acids can be combined in antiparallel side-by-side dimeric complexes for sequence-specific recognition in the minor groove of DNA. Because the curvature of four or five contiguous Im-Py rings does not perfectly match the canonical B-helix, β-alanine (β) residues have been inserted to reset the register. Complexes of three pyrrole-imidazole polyamides of sequence composition ImPyPy-X-PyPyPy-Dp, where X = Py, β, or glycine (G), bound to a 13 base pair DNA duplex containing a 9 base pair 5'-TGTATATCA-3' match site were characterized by NMR. NMR titrations and NOESY data combined with restrained molecular modeling show that each polyamide adopts an extended antiparallel dimeric conformation with the ligands fully overlapped around a central Py/Py, G/G, or β/β pair. Conformational exchange is seen near the linker for the G-linked complex, but not with the β or Py linkers. In addition to providing the first direct structural evidence for formation of the aliphatic β/β pairing in the minor groove, models support the idea that the β linker of ImPyPy-β-PyPyPy-Dp provides an optimal combination of size, flexibility, and alignment of the polyamide-paired aromatic subunits in extended, dimeric 2:1 complexes.
ASJC Scopus subject areas
- Colloid and Surface Chemistry