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An unprecedented mechanism of nucleotide methylation in organisms containing thyX

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Science  29 Jan 2016:
Vol. 351, Issue 6272, pp. 507-510
DOI: 10.1126/science.aad0300

A special way to make T

The genomes of all cell-based life consist of DNA. Blocking DNA synthesis is thus lethal, and if targeted selectively, its inhibition can provide cancer and antibiotic treatments. For example, the drug methotrexate interferes with the synthesis of thymidine, the base T in DNA. Mishanina et al. found that the enzyme that carries out the last step of thymidine synthesis in several human pathogens, which cause tuberculosis, anthrax, and typhus, uses a previously undescribed mechanism. Knowing the mechanism may allow the development of specific inhibitors for this enzyme.

Science, this issue p. 507

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