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The radA gene of the hyperthermophilic archaeon Pyrococcus woesei (Thermococcales) was cloned and overexpressed in Escherichia coli. The 1050-bp gene codes for a 349-amino-acid polypeptide with an M r of 38,397 which shows 100 % positional amino acid identity to Pyrococcus furiosus RadA and 27.1 % to the E. coli RecA protein. Recombinant RadA was overproduced in Escherichia coli as a His-tagged fusion protein and purified to electrophoretic homogeneity using a simple procedure consisting of ammonium sulfate precipitation and metal-affinity chromatography. In solution RadA exists as an undecamer (11-mer). The protein binds both to ssDNA and dsDNA. RadA has been found to be highly thermostable, it remains almost unaffected by a 4-h incubation at 94 °C. The addition of the RadA protein to either simplex or multiplex PCR assays, significantly improves the specificity of DNA amplification by eliminating non-specific products. Among applications tested the RadA protein proved to be useful in allelic discrimination assay of HADHA gene associated with long-chain 3-hydroxylacyl-CoA dehydrogenase deficiency that in infancy may lead to hypotonia, serious heart and liver problems and even sudden death.


Aleksandra Stefanska, Lidia Gaffke, Anna-Karina Kaczorowska, Magdalena Plotka, Slawomir Dabrowski, Tadeusz Kaczorowski. Highly thermostable RadA protein from the archaeon Pyrococcus woesei enhances specificity of simplex and multiplex PCR assays. Journal of applied genetics. 2016 May;57(2):239-49

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PMID: 26337425

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