Analysis of patterns of twist angles in DNA double helix

Int J Biol Macromol. 1990 Aug;12(4):226-32. doi: 10.1016/0141-8130(90)90001-q.


We have analysed theoretically the patterns of twist angles of B-DNA by the Tung-Harvey model mainly. It is shown that for a sequence of twist angles a smaller twist angle tends to follow a larger one and vice versa. Therefore the sequence of twist angles always takes a gentle zig-zag form. For simplicity we convert the sequence of twist angles to a symbolic sequence consisting of L and S, where L or S represents a large or a small angle, respectively. The -10 and -35 regions of 112 well-defined promoters for E. coli RNA polymerase, which were compiled by Hawley and McClure, have been analysed in terms of LS sequences in detail. The results shows that the number of LS sequences for promoters is considerably limited and the promoter mutations do not change the patterns of LS sequences in most cases. Several new ideas, which are believed to be useful in the further study, have been presented.

MeSH terms

  • Base Sequence
  • DNA / chemistry*
  • Models, Molecular
  • Nucleic Acid Conformation
  • Promoter Regions, Genetic


  • DNA