Telomere G-rich overhang length measurement: DSN method

Yong Zhao, Jerry W. Shay, Woodring E. Wright

Research output: Chapter in Book/Report/Conference proceedingChapter


Telomeres terminate in 3′ single-stranded G-rich overhangs that function in telomere end protection and telomerase action. An accurate measurement of overhang length is challenging due to the presence of many kilobases of double-stranded telomere DNA. Here, a simple method is described that utilizes duplex specific nuclease (DSN) to digest all double-stranded DNA including telomeres to fragments of <10 bp, leaving the single-stranded overhangs intact. Their length can then be determined by Southern blot using super-sensitive telomere C-rich probes.

Original languageEnglish (US)
Title of host publicationMethods in Molecular Biology
PublisherHumana Press Inc.
Number of pages8
StatePublished - 2017

Publication series

NameMethods in Molecular Biology
ISSN (Print)10643745


  • Duplex specific nuclease (DSN)
  • G-rich overhang
  • Southern blot
  • Telomere
  • Telomere C-rich probe

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • Molecular Biology
  • Genetics

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  • Cite this

    Zhao, Y., Shay, J. W., & Wright, W. E. (2017). Telomere G-rich overhang length measurement: DSN method. In Methods in Molecular Biology (Vol. 1587, pp. 55-62). (Methods in Molecular Biology; Vol. 1587). Humana Press Inc..