Antibodies which are specific to the Z-DNA conformation have been purified and characterized on the basis of their binding to three different DNA polymers which can form this left-handed helix. These antibodies bind specifically to polytene chromosomes of Drosophila melanogaster as visualized by fluorescent staining. The staining is found in the interband regions and its intensity varies among different interbands in a reproducible manner. This is the first identification of the Z-DNA conformation in material of biological origin.
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