Two forms of DNA polymerase delta from mouse cells. Purification and properties

J Biol Chem. 1990 Sep 25;265(27):16402-11.


A procedure is described for the purification from cultured mouse cells of two DNA polymerase "delta-like" enzymes, as defined by intrinsic 3'-exonuclease activity, inhibition by aphidicolin, and relative insensitivity to N2-(p-n-butylphenyl)-dGTP. One of the two enzymes has been purified to near homogeneity and, similar to the DNA polymerase delta from calf thymus described by Lee et al. (Lee, M. Y. W. T., Tan, C. K., Downey, K. M., and So, A. G. (1984) Biochemistry 23, 1906-1913), it has a total molecular mass of 178 kDa (from sedimentation velocity of 8.0 S and Stokes radius of 54 A) and is composed of one each of 125- and 50-kDa polypeptides. It also resembles the DNA polymerase delta of Lee et al. in being stimulated by proliferating cell nuclear antigen (PCNA). It is the first clear structural and functional counterpart of the calf thymus enzyme. The major difference between the mouse DNA polymerase delta and the calf thymus enzyme of Lee et al. is that, under specific conditions, the mouse enzyme is active with poly(dA).oligo(dT) in the absence of PCNA, whereas the activity of the calf thymus enzyme with this template is reported to be completely dependent on PCNA. The reason for this difference is not known at this time. The second mouse cell enzyme has a molecular mass of 112 kDa (from sedimentation velocity of 6.3 S and Stokes radius of 43.0 A) and consists of a single polypeptide of 123-125 kDa in denaturing gels (p125). On the basis of its apparent formation by dissociation of DNA polymerase delta, and multiple similarities with DNA polymerase delta in enzymatic properties, the p125 is provisionally identified as the 125-kDa polypeptide of DNA polymerase delta. The p125 does not respond to PCNA, suggesting that the 50-kDa polypeptide is required for the stimulation of DNA polymerase delta by PCNA. The presence of the p125 in cell extracts would explain reports that DNA polymerase delta consists of a single polypeptide of approximately 125 kDa and/or thast it has a smaller molecular mass than DNA polymerase delta of Lee et al. and is not affected by PCNA (this does not apply to PCNA-independent DNA polymerase delta-like enzymes with higher molecular mass than the polymerase delta of Lee et al., which have recently been named DNA polymerases epsilon).

Publication types

  • Comparative Study
  • Research Support, U.S. Gov't, P.H.S.

MeSH terms

  • Animals
  • Cattle
  • Centrifugation, Density Gradient
  • Chromatography, Affinity
  • Chromatography, Gel
  • Chromatography, Ion Exchange
  • DNA Polymerase III
  • DNA Primase
  • DNA-Directed DNA Polymerase / isolation & purification*
  • DNA-Directed DNA Polymerase / metabolism
  • Isoenzymes / isolation & purification*
  • Isoenzymes / metabolism
  • Kinetics
  • Mice
  • Molecular Weight
  • Nuclear Proteins / isolation & purification
  • Nuclear Proteins / pharmacology
  • Proliferating Cell Nuclear Antigen
  • RNA Nucleotidyltransferases / isolation & purification
  • Substrate Specificity
  • Templates, Genetic
  • Thymus Gland / enzymology


  • Isoenzymes
  • Nuclear Proteins
  • Proliferating Cell Nuclear Antigen
  • DNA Primase
  • RNA Nucleotidyltransferases
  • DNA Polymerase III
  • DNA-Directed DNA Polymerase