The cloning and expression of the CviPII DNA nicking and modification system encoded by chlorella virus NYs-1 is described. The system consists of a co-linear MTase encoding gene (cviPIIM) and a nicking endonuclease encoding gene (cviPIINt) separated by 12 nt. M.CviPII possesses eight conserved amino acid motifs (I to VIII) typical of C5 MTases, but, like another chlorella virus MTase M.CviJI, lacks conserved motifs IX and X. In addition to modification of the first cytosine in CCD (D = A, G or T) sequences, M.CviPII modifies both the first two cytosines in CCAA and CCCG sites as well. Nt.CviPII has significant amino acid sequence similarity to Type II restriction endonuclease CviJI that recognizes an overlapping sequence (RG CY). Nt.CviPII was expressed in Escherichia coli with or without a His-tag in a host pre-modified by M.CviPII. Recombinant Nt.CviPII recognizes the DNA sequence CCD and cleaves the phosphodiester bond 5′ of the first cytosine while the other strand of DNA at this site is not affected. Nt.CviPII displays site preferences with CCR (R = A or G) sites preferred over CCT sites. Nt.CviPII is active from 16 to 65°C with a temperature optimum of 30-45°C. Nt.CviPII can be used to generate single-stranded DNAs (ssDNAs) for isothermal strand-displacement amplification. Nt.CviPII was used in combination with Bst DNA polymerase I large fragment to rapidly amplify anonymous DNA from genomic DNA or from a single bacterial colony.
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