Special Mathematics Department Colloquium|
"Topological analysis of enzymatic actions: site-specific recombinases and
Thursday, February 17, 2005
4:15pm in JWB 335
DNA topology is the study of geometrical (supercoiling) and
topological(knotting) properties of DNA loops and circular DNA molecules.
Virtually every reaction involving DNA is influenced by DNA topology, or
has topological effects. Site-specific recombinases and topoisomerases are
enzymes able to change the topology of circular DNA by breaking the DNA
and introducing one or more crossing changes. Mathematical analysis of
such changes may provide relevant information about the possible enzymatic
pathways, and about DNA conformation at the moment of double-stranded
break induction. In this talk I will discuss some of the problems that I
am currently interested in, and the topological and computational tools
used in their analyses.