Several electron scavengers that irreversibly form potential hydrogen-abstracting species upon one-electron reduction have been tested as agents for conversion of reductive damage to DNA bases into damage to the sugar-phosphate backbone. Electron spin resonance spectroscopy is employed to follow the production of radicals and transformations after irradiation. The scavengers tested included neutral (acrylamide, iodoacetamide) and cationic [triphenylsulfonium (${\rm Ph}_{2}{\rm S}^{+}$), o,o′-diphenylenebromonium (DPB) and o,o′-diphenylenebromonium (DPI)] compounds. Modification of reductive radiation damage in DNA is found to occur by scavenging of initial mobile electrons at low temperatures as well as thermally activated electron transfer from DNA electron-gain centers upon annealing. Electron transfer from the bases to hydrogen-bonded acrylamide has the smallest activation energy among other scavengers but produces a secondary alkyl radical incapable of abstracting hydrogen from the sugar-phosphate backbone. A primary alkyl radical generated from iodoacetamide has been shown to abstract preferentially from the thymine methyl group but not from deoxyribose moieties. Aryl radicals generated from aromatic onium salts such as${\rm Ph}_{2}{\rm S}^{+}$, and especially DPI and DPB, are found to be the agents which best abstract hydrogen atoms from the deoxyribose portion of DNA. The use of DPB and DPI as radiation modifiers allows the elimination of undesirable side reactions of aryl radicals and through hydrogen abstraction results in high yields of a species identified as the DNA${\rm C1}^{\prime \cdot}$ sugar radical. The second reaction pathway found for DPI and DPB in DNA is addition of an aryl radical to the thymine 5,6 double bond. Cysteamine is shown to preferentially eliminate sugar radicals upon annealing and to have little impact on the thermal stability of the thymine adduct radical.

This content is only available as a PDF.
You do not currently have access to this content.