G. The schematic represents the expected dominant stoichiometry of the complex

G. The schematic represents the expected dominant stoichiometry of the complex but does not exclude the possibility of minor amounts of complexes with other stoichiometries. (e) 1 agarose gel confirming the formation of multi protein-DNA Title Loaded From File hybrid (f) 1 agarose gel showing the presence and absence of DNA strand in the supernatant of incubated NTV beads by Title Loaded From File tST-DNA and biotin-DNA respectively. Biotinylated DNA easily binds to NTV, tST labelled DNA does not and remains in the supernatant. doi:10.1371/journal.pone.0054440.gOptical Tweezers Study of Protein-DNA HybridsFigure 2. Mechanical stability analysis. (a) Optical tweezers setup (b) Force-extension curve of dsDNA showing overstretching at 65 pN, as well as the characteristic step-wise relaxation. The measured DNA stretching curves did not display additional steps that might have arisen from STN unfolding or its detachment from the surface. (c) Fraction of tethers that resisted 60 pN in first and second pull, compared between several commonly used linkage strategies and our proposed linkage strategies based on STN. For the (STN)biotin-DNA-Dig(AntiDig) system, almost all tethers broke at the first pull, and hence the subsequent pulls are not indicated. doi:10.1371/journal.pone.0054440.gTo make this construct we first mixed STN (1 mg/ml) and tSTMBP (3 mg/ml) in 10:1 ratio. Unbound STN was removed by amylose column purification. tST-MBP bound to amylose column was then eluted with maltose. SDS-PAGE (Figure 1d) showed two bands for eluted sample, with one corresponding to tST-MBP and one to STN only, thus showing that STN had successfully been bound to MBP. The previously constructed tST-DNA was then mixed with a large excess of the MBP-tST-STN hybrid (.30-fold molar excess) in order to favour binding of a single DNA molecule to each MBP. Agarose gel analysis showed a band distinctly above from tST-DNA, consistent with the formation of a MBP-tSTSTN-tST-DNA hybrid (Figure 1e). As expected, MBP-tST-STNtST-DNA hybrid shows a significantly reduced mobility as compared to tST-DNA due to its larger size and higher molecular weight. The successful formation of the complex 1655472 hybrid also confirms the chemical structure of the constituting hybrids synthesized in the previous steps and the specificity of the linkages involved (Figure 1e and S1).Binding specificityIn many experiments, different specific linkages are typically required. For instance, when molecules are tethered between two beads in optical tweezers, each end is often attached with a different linkage. If the binding in these linkages would not be specific, both ends would bind to the same bead. Here we consider the two linkages tST-STN and biotin-NTV. To test whether NTV binds specifically to biotin and not to tST, NTV-coated beads were incubated either with tST-DNA or with biotin-DNA. After 30 min, beads were removed by centrifuging and supernatants were loaded onto an agarose gel (Figure 1f). The results showed that biotinylated DNA bound the beads efficiently, as no DNA could be detected in the supernatant. In contrast, all of the input tST-DNA remained in supernatant, showing no affinity to the beads. These results indicate that NTV binds selectively to biotin and not to tST, which is a central requirement for instance for efficiently tethering tST-DNA-biotin constructs between STNand NTV-coated beads.Figure 3. Mechanical stability analysis at constant force. (a) An example of stretched tether kept under a constant force of 60 pN in th.G. The schematic represents the expected dominant stoichiometry of the complex but does not exclude the possibility of minor amounts of complexes with other stoichiometries. (e) 1 agarose gel confirming the formation of multi protein-DNA hybrid (f) 1 agarose gel showing the presence and absence of DNA strand in the supernatant of incubated NTV beads by tST-DNA and biotin-DNA respectively. Biotinylated DNA easily binds to NTV, tST labelled DNA does not and remains in the supernatant. doi:10.1371/journal.pone.0054440.gOptical Tweezers Study of Protein-DNA HybridsFigure 2. Mechanical stability analysis. (a) Optical tweezers setup (b) Force-extension curve of dsDNA showing overstretching at 65 pN, as well as the characteristic step-wise relaxation. The measured DNA stretching curves did not display additional steps that might have arisen from STN unfolding or its detachment from the surface. (c) Fraction of tethers that resisted 60 pN in first and second pull, compared between several commonly used linkage strategies and our proposed linkage strategies based on STN. For the (STN)biotin-DNA-Dig(AntiDig) system, almost all tethers broke at the first pull, and hence the subsequent pulls are not indicated. doi:10.1371/journal.pone.0054440.gTo make this construct we first mixed STN (1 mg/ml) and tSTMBP (3 mg/ml) in 10:1 ratio. Unbound STN was removed by amylose column purification. tST-MBP bound to amylose column was then eluted with maltose. SDS-PAGE (Figure 1d) showed two bands for eluted sample, with one corresponding to tST-MBP and one to STN only, thus showing that STN had successfully been bound to MBP. The previously constructed tST-DNA was then mixed with a large excess of the MBP-tST-STN hybrid (.30-fold molar excess) in order to favour binding of a single DNA molecule to each MBP. Agarose gel analysis showed a band distinctly above from tST-DNA, consistent with the formation of a MBP-tSTSTN-tST-DNA hybrid (Figure 1e). As expected, MBP-tST-STNtST-DNA hybrid shows a significantly reduced mobility as compared to tST-DNA due to its larger size and higher molecular weight. The successful formation of the complex 1655472 hybrid also confirms the chemical structure of the constituting hybrids synthesized in the previous steps and the specificity of the linkages involved (Figure 1e and S1).Binding specificityIn many experiments, different specific linkages are typically required. For instance, when molecules are tethered between two beads in optical tweezers, each end is often attached with a different linkage. If the binding in these linkages would not be specific, both ends would bind to the same bead. Here we consider the two linkages tST-STN and biotin-NTV. To test whether NTV binds specifically to biotin and not to tST, NTV-coated beads were incubated either with tST-DNA or with biotin-DNA. After 30 min, beads were removed by centrifuging and supernatants were loaded onto an agarose gel (Figure 1f). The results showed that biotinylated DNA bound the beads efficiently, as no DNA could be detected in the supernatant. In contrast, all of the input tST-DNA remained in supernatant, showing no affinity to the beads. These results indicate that NTV binds selectively to biotin and not to tST, which is a central requirement for instance for efficiently tethering tST-DNA-biotin constructs between STNand NTV-coated beads.Figure 3. Mechanical stability analysis at constant force. (a) An example of stretched tether kept under a constant force of 60 pN in th.