Research Interests


   Much of biochemistry and biophysics of DNA is based on the electronic properties of nucleotides and its components, which in the simplest sense, are reflected in ionization energies.  Ionizing radiation is a pre-translational effect and its results are established to cause significant genetic damage that can induce mutations. An accumulation of such mutations can lead to cancer. 

   Methylation is a post-translational effect and it can either activate or suppress carcinogenesis. The mechanisms of methylation and demethylation in carcinogenesis remain undetermined and there are questions as to whether the methylation changes are a cause or consequence of cellular transformation and clonal expansion.  

   We investigate the mechanisms of UV radiation-induced DNA damage (photoionization) and the methylation of DNA and its components by carcinogenic electrophilic (alkylating) agents. 

Recent Publications


  • A  computational investigation of cytosine and 5-methyl cytosine reactivity  by means of ionization potentials and one specific methylation pathway, 

M.  V. Yermolina, G. A. Papadantonakis, Chemical Physics Letters, 2020, 752, 137544

  • Electron  and radical cation of sulfur-substituted thymine derivatives produced near  photoionization threshold can alter and distort double-helix DNA structure, 

M. V. Yermolina, G. A. Papadantonakis, Chemical Physics Letters, 2019, 737, 136831

  • A  theoretical investigation of sugar and phosphate contributions to the    activation barriers of guanine methylation by carcinogenic methane     diazonium ion, A. Rojas, S. Cabal, G. A. Papadantonakis, Chemical Physics      Letters, 2019, 714, 24-29

  • Activation   barriers for methylation of DNA bases by dimethyl sulfate; 

D. R. Eichler,   G. A. Papadantonakis, Chemical Physics Letters, 2017, 689, 8-14.


  • Hydration  effects on the photoionization energy of 2 '-deoxyguanosine 5 '-phosphate     and activation barriers for guanine methylation by carcinogenic methane  diazonium ions, 

D. R. Eichler, H. A. Hamann, K.A. Harte, G. A.   Papadantonakis, Chemical Physics Letters, 2017, 680, 83-89.

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