DNA G-quadruplexes are not only attractive drug targets for cancer therapeutics, but also have important applications in supramolecular assembly. Here, we report a platinum(II)-based tripod (Pt-tripod) specifically binds the biological relevant hybrid-1 human telomeric G-quadruplex (Tel26), and strongly inhibits telomerase activity. Further investigations illustrate Pt-tripod induces the formation of monomeric and multimeric Pt-tripod‒Tel26 complex structures in solution. We solve the 1:1 and the unique dimeric 4:2 Pt-tripod–Tel26 complex structures by NMR. The structures indicate preferential binding of Pt-tripod to the 5ʹ-end of Tel26 at a low Pt-tripod/Tel26 ratio of 0–1.0. After adding more Pt-tripod, the Pt-tripod binds the 3ʹ-end of Tel26, unexpectedly inducing a unique dimeric 4:2 structure interlocked by an A:A non-canonical pair at the 3ʹ-end. Our structures provide a structural basis for understanding the dynamic binding of small molecules with G-quadruplex and DNA damage mechanisms, and insights into the recognition and assembly of higher-order G-quadruplexes.
ASJC Scopus subject areas
- General Chemistry
- General Biochemistry, Genetics and Molecular Biology
- General Physics and Astronomy