Exposure of DNA to ultraviolet light produces harmful crosslinks between adjacent pyrimidine bases, to form cyclobutane pyrimidine dimers (CPDs) and pyrimidine(6-4)pyrimidone photoproducts. The CPD is frequently formed, and its repair mechanisms have been exclusively studied by using a CPD formed at a TT site. On the other hand, biochemical analyses using CPDs formed within cytosine-containing sequence contexts are practically difficult, because saturated cytosine easily undergoes hydrolytic deamination. Here, we found that N-alkylation of the exocyclic amino group of 2'-deoxycytidine prevents hydrolysis in CPD formation, and an N-methylated cytosine-containing CPD was stable enough to be derivatized into its phosphoramidite building block and incorporated into oligonucleotides. Kinetic studies of the CPD-containing oligonucleotide indicated that its lifetime under physiological conditions is relatively long (∼ 7 days). In biochemical analyses using human DNA polymerase η, incorporation of TMP opposite the N-methylcytosine moiety of the CPD was clearly detected, in addition to dGMP incorporation, and the incorrect TMP incorporation blocked DNA synthesis. The thermodynamic parameters confirmed the formation of this unusual base pair.