[Molvis-list] DNA B-form to Z-form transition

Eric Martz emartz at microbio.umass.edu
Mon Nov 28 22:42:03 EST 2005

In the October 20 issue of Nature, the first empirical structure for a B- 
to Z-form DNA double helix transition was reported. I have included it in 
my Atlas of Macromolecules
(Scroll down to the first entry in the "Challenging" section.)

The crystallographic structure has a short DNA double helix, with the less 
stable Z-form stabilized by bound protein, and the B-form at the 
protein-free end. The Atlas has links to view it (2ACJ) in FirstGlance in 
Jmol (firstglance.jmol.org) or Protein Explorer (proteinexplorer.org).

The cover of the issue of Nature reporting this structure showed a 
breathtaking theoretical model in which the B- and Z-form ends of the 
transition had been extended. Kyeong Kyu Kim kindly shared this model with 
permission for public redistribution. Links in the Atlas permit easy 
viewing of this model (somewhat trimmed) in FirstGlance in Jmol or Protein 

I captured some of my favorite views of the model and 2ACJ into MolSlides 
(molslides.org), which can be viewed in Jmol or Chime from the Atlas.

As time permits, I plan to link all entries in this Atlas for viewing in 
Jmol as well as PE/Chime.

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Eric Martz, Professor Emeritus, Dept Microbiology
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