The biological activity of protein-free transfectious DNA isolated from phage 3NT of was not altered after treatment with diethyl pyrocarbonate (DEP), and the DEP-sodium dodecyl sulphate (SDS) method could be used to extract transfectious DNA from phage 3NT. No transfectious DNA could be isolated from phage T4 of by the conventional phenol-SDS or by the DEP-SDS method. The DNA extracted from T4 phage either by the phenol-SDS or by the DEP-SDS method had about the same transforming activity, and the transforming activity of T4 DNA extracted by the phenol-SDS method was not reduced by DEP treatment. On the other hand, protein-containing infectious particles obtained from T4 phage of were inactivated by DEP. It is concluded that DEP does not react with double-stranded phage DNA and can be used in the extraction of biologically active phage DNA, if no protein is needed for biological activity.


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