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Plasma Medicine
SJR: 0.278 SNIP: 0.183 CiteScore™: 0.57

ISSN Print: 1947-5764
ISSN Online: 1947-5772

Plasma Medicine

DOI: 10.1615/PlasmaMed.2017019986
pages 65-76

Experimental Study of Atmospheric Pressure Argon Plasma Jet−Induced Strand Breakage in Large DNA Molecules

Rajendra Shrestha
Department of Natural Science, Kathmandu University, Dhulikhel, Nepal; Department of Physics, Nepal Banepa Polytechnic College, Banepa, Nepal
Deepak P. Subedi
Department of Natural Science, Kathmandu University, Dhulikhel, Nepal
Sandeep Adhikari
Department of Biotechnology, Kathmandu University, Dhulikhel, Nepal
Aman Maharjan
Department of Natural Science, Kathmandu University, Dhulikhel, Nepal
Himal Shrestha
Department of Natural Science, Kathmandu University, Dhulikhel, Nepal
Gyanu R. Pandey
Department of Biotechnology, Kathmandu University, Dhulikhel, Nepal


In recent years, the atmospheric pressure plasma jet (APPJ) has been extensively studied for potential biological and medical application. It has been shown that a bactericidal effect is primarily due to the inactivation of the DNA repair mechanism or a DNA damage response in the microorganism. The damage is attributed to the interaction of biomolecules with reactive species produced by the plasma. In this experiment, the influence of the environmental medium on the efficacy of an argon plasma jet in the breakdown of large DNA (λ DNA) molecules was studied using characterization of the APPJ by electrical and optical methods. The DNA was suspended in four different solutions: physiological saline (PS), water, phosphate buffered saline (PBS), and Tris-EDTA (TE) and exposed to a plasma jet for three different periods of time (60, 90, and 120 s). The molecular responses of λ DNA were analyzed in gel electrophoresis. The largest amount of breakage was found to occur in water, with significant damage found at 120 s. PBS showed a linear degradation pattern. The free-radical scavenging properties of the medium may play a significant part in preventing strand breakage, and this must therefore be taken into account when exposing microorganisms and human cells during experiments. The crucial role of medium properties highlights the need for further studies of organisms in their natural surroundings.

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