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In vitro transcription using psychrophilic phage VSW-3 RNA polymerase

By Heng Xia, Yixin Jiang, Rui Cheng, Bingbing Yu, Xueling Lu, Hui Wu, Bin Zhu

Posted 15 Sep 2020
bioRxiv DOI: 10.1101/2020.09.14.297226

RNA research and applications were underpinned by in vitro transcription (IVT), while the RNA impurity resulted from the enzymatic reagents severely impede downstream applications. To improve the stability and purity of synthesized RNA we had characterized a novel single-subunit RNA polymerase (RNAP) encoded by a psychrophilic phage VSW-3 from plateau lake to produce RNA at low temperature. The VSW-3 RNAP is capable of carrying out in vitro RNA synthesis at low temperature (4-25°C) to reduce RNA degradation and alleviate the need of costly RNase inhibitor. Compared to routinely used T7 RNAP, VSW-3 RNAP provides comparable yield of transcripts, but is insensitive to class II transcription terminators and synthesizes RNA without redundant 3’ -cis extension. More importantly, through dot-blot detection with the J2 monoclonal antibody, we found that the RNA products synthesized by VSW-3 RNAP contain much lower amount of or virtually no double-stranded RNA (dsRNA) by-products, which are significant in most T7 RNAP products and may cause severe cellular immune response. Combining these advantages, the VSW-3 RNAP is an advantageous enzyme for IVT, especially to produce RNA for in vivo use. ### Competing Interest Statement The authors have declared no competing interest.

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