A simple, high sensitivity mutation screening using Ampligase mediated T7 endonuclease I and Surveyor nuclease with microfluidic capillary electrophoresis

Electrophoresis. 2012 Mar;33(5):788-96. doi: 10.1002/elps.201100460. Epub 2012 Mar 21.


Mutation and polymorphism detection is of increasing importance for a variety of medical applications, including identification of cancer biomarkers and genotyping for inherited genetic disorders. Among various mutation-screening technologies, enzyme mismatch cleavage (EMC) represents a great potential as an ideal scanning method for its simplicity and high efficiency, where the heteroduplex DNAs are recognized and cleaved into DNA fragments by mismatch-recognizing nucleases. Thereby, the enzymatic cleavage activities of the resolving nucleases play a critical role for the EMC sensitivity. In this study, we utilized the unique features of microfluidic capillary electrophoresis and de novo gene synthesis to explore the enzymatic properties of T7 endonuclease I and Surveyor nuclease for EMC. Homoduplex and HE DNAs with specific mismatches at desired positions were synthesized using PCR (polymerase chain reaction) gene synthesis. The effects of nonspecific cleavage, preference of mismatches, exonuclease activity, incubation time, and DNA loading capability were systematically examined. In addition, the utilization of a thermostable DNA ligase for real-time ligase mediation was investigated. Analysis of the experimental results has led to new insights into the enzymatic cleavage activities of T7 endonuclease I and Surveyor nuclease, and aided in optimizing EMC conditions, which enhance the sensitivity and efficiency in screening of unknown DNA variations.

Publication types

  • Research Support, Non-U.S. Gov't

MeSH terms

  • DNA Ligases / metabolism*
  • DNA Mutational Analysis / methods*
  • Deoxyribonuclease I / metabolism*
  • Deoxyribonucleases / metabolism*
  • Electrophoresis, Microchip / methods*
  • Genes, Bacterial
  • Models, Molecular
  • Mutation
  • Sensitivity and Specificity


  • Deoxyribonucleases
  • Deoxyribonuclease I
  • Ampligase
  • DNA Ligases