Banding patterns induced by selective DNA extraction with the restriction endonucleases Ple I and Tfi I reveal the distribution of human satellite DNAs within the major heterochromatic blocks on human metaphase chromosomes. Ple I and Tfi I are able to discriminate Hin fI target sites, depending on the nature of the central base. Ple I digestion specifically reveals regions, within major C-bands, that include the major sites of satellite II DNA and permits more precise localization of satellite II domains than does radioactive in situ hybridization. The close correspondence between the cytogenetic results presented here and previously reported molecular data seems to support the idea that the frequency of enzyme target sequences is the main factor in determining the action produced by restriction endonucleases on fixed human chromosomes and that chromatin conformation is not an important factor in limiting enzyme accessibility.

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