Articles written in Journal of Chemical Sciences
Volume 113 Issue 1 February 2001 pp 35-42
Zinc finger domains consist of sequences of amino acids containing cysteine and histidine residues tetrahedrally coordinated to a zinc ion. The role of zinc in a DNA binding finger was considered purely structural due to the absence of redox chemistry in zinc. However, whether other metals e.g. Co(II) or Cd(II) can substitute Zn(II) is not settled. For an answer the detailed interaction of Co(II) and Cd(II) with cysteine methylester and histidine methylester has been investigated as a model for the zinc core in zinc fingers. The study was extended to different temperatures to evaluate the thermodynamic parameters associated with these interactions. The results suggest that zinc has a unique role.
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