Title: Understanding the Interaction between Low-Energy Electrons and DNA Nucleotides in Aqueous Solution
Author(s): McAllister M., Smyth, M., Gu B., Tribello G.A., Kohanoff J.,
Journal of Physical Chemistry Letters, 6, No. 15, pp. 3091-3097 (6 August 2015)
Reactions that can damage DNA have been simulated using a combination of molecular dynamics and density functional theory. In particular, the damage caused by the attachment of a low energy electron to the nucleobase. Simulations of anionic single nucleotides of DNA in an aqueous environment that was modeled explicitly have been performed. This has allowed us to examine the role played by the water molecules that surround the DNA in radiation damage mechanisms. Our simulations show that hydrogen bonding and protonation of the nucleotide by the water can have a significant effect on the barriers to strand breaking reactions. Furthermore, these effects are not the same for all four of the bases.