Thermodynamic versus kinetic products of DNA alkylation as modeled by reaction of deoxyadenosine

W. F. Veldhuyzen, A. J. Shallop, R. A. Jones, S. E. Rokita

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review

93 Scopus citations


Alkylating agents that react through highly electrophilic quinone methide intermediates often express a specificity for the weakly nucleophilic exocyclic amines of deoxyguanosine (dG N2) and deoxyadenosine (dA N6) in DNA. Investigations now indicate that the most nucleophilic site of dA (N1) preferentially, but reversibly, conjugates to a model ortho-quinone methide. Ultimately, the thermodynamically stable dA N6 isomer accumulates by trapping the quinone methide that is transiently regenerated from collapse of the dA N1 adduct. Alternative conversions of the dA N1 to the dA N6 derivative by a Dimroth rearrangement or other intramolecular processes are not competitive under neutral conditions, as demonstrated by studies with [6-15N]-dA. Both a model quinone methide precursor and its dA N1 adduct yield a similar profile of deoxynucleoside products when treated with an equimolar mixture of dC, dA, dG, and T. Consequently, the most readily observed products of DNA modification resulting from reversible reactions may reflect thermodynamic rather than kinetic selectivity.

Original languageEnglish (US)
Pages (from-to)11126-11132
Number of pages7
JournalJournal of the American Chemical Society
Issue number45
StatePublished - Nov 14 2001

All Science Journal Classification (ASJC) codes

  • Catalysis
  • General Chemistry
  • Biochemistry
  • Colloid and Surface Chemistry


Dive into the research topics of 'Thermodynamic versus kinetic products of DNA alkylation as modeled by reaction of deoxyadenosine'. Together they form a unique fingerprint.

Cite this