We investigated the efficiency and the mechanism of action of two—one symmetrically and one asymmetrically substituted—glycoconjugated tetraphenyl porphyrins in their photoreaction with T7 phage as a model of nucleoprotein (NP) complexes. A correlation was found between the dark inactivation of T7 and the binding of porphyrins determined by fluorescence spectroscopy. Both types of porphyrin sensitized the photoinactivation of T7, but the slopes of inactivation kinetics were markedly different. There was no correlation between the dark binding and the photosensitizing efficacy of the two derivatives. Inactivation was moderated by 1,3-diphenylisobenzofuran and 1,3-dimethyl-2-thiourea; however, neither of them inhibited T7 inactivation completely. This result suggests that both Type-I and Type-II reactions play a role in the virus inactivation. Optical melting studies revealed structural changes in the protein part but not in the DNA of the photochemically treated NP complex. Polymerase chain reaction analysis of a 555 bp segment of gene 1 and a 3826 bp segment of genes 3 and 4 failed to demonstrate any DNA damage.
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Vol. 73 • No. 3