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Thymine dissociation and dimer formation: A Raman and synchronous fluorescence spectroscopic study


In this study, absorption, fluorescence, synchronous fluorescence, and Raman spectra of nonirradiated and ultraviolet (UV)-irradiated thymine solutions were recorded in order to detect thymine dimer formation. The thymine dimer formation, as a function of irradiation dose, was determined by Raman spectroscopy. In addition, the formation of a mutagenic (6-4) photoproduct was identified by its synchronous fluorescence spectrum. Our spectroscopic data suggest that the rate of conversion of thymine to thymine dimer decreases after 20 min of UV irradiation, owing to the formation of an equilibrium between the thymine dimers and monomers. However, the formation of the (6-4) photoproduct continued to increase with UV irradiation. In addition, the Raman spectra of nonirradiated and irradiated calf thymus DNA were recorded, and the formation of thymine dimers was detected. The spectroscopic data presented make it possible to determine the mechanism of thymine dimer formation, which is known to be responsible for the inhibition of DNA replication that causes bacteria inactivation.

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