In nucleosomes, the access of DNA lesions to nucleotide excision repair is hindered by histone proteins. However, evidence that the nature of the DNA lesions may play a role in facilitating access is emerging, but these phenomena are not well-understood. We have used molecular dynamics simulations to elucidate the structural, dynamic, and energetic properties of the R and S 5′-8-cyclo-2′-dG and the (+)-cis-anti-B[a]P-dG lesions in a nucleosome. Our results show that the (+)-cis-anti-B[a]P-dG adduct is more dynamic and more destabilizing than the smaller and more constrained 5′,8-cyclo-2′-dG lesions, suggesting more facile access to the more bulky (+)-cis-anti-B[a]P-dG lesion.
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