Excision of thymine dimers from specifically incised ultraviolet irradiated DNA by E. coli DNA polymerase I is stimulated by concurrent DNA synthesis. The 36,000 molecular-weight "small fragment" obtained by limited proteolysis of DNA polymerase I, which retains only the 5′ → 3′ exonuclease activity, also excises thymine dimers, but at one-tenth the rate of the intact enzyme. However, the rate of excision is increased by addition of the "large" 76,000-molecular weight fragment. With the further addition of the 4 deoxynucleoside triphosphates, permitting DNA synthesis to occur, excision approaches rates observed with the intact enzyme. The same result was obtained with a fragment of DNA polymerase I with 5′ → 3′ exonuclease activity that is present uniquely in polymerase I amber mutants. © 1974.
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