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Nucleic Acids Res. Jun 25, 1985; 13(12): 4577–4596.
PMCID: PMC321807

Apocytochrome b and other mitochondrial DNA sequences are differentially expressed during the life cycle of Trypanosoma brucei.


Cytochromes and Krebs cycle enzymes are not detected in bloodstream forms of Trypanosoma brucei but are present in procyclic forms. We have analyzed transcription of mitochondrial sequences which contain the apocytochrome b gene and several other open reading frames (ORFs). Multiple transcripts map to individual DNA sequences located on both DNA strands. Larger low abundance transcripts map to multiple ORFs and may be precursor RNAs. Small abundant transcripts map to G + C rich sequences that do not have obvious protein coding functions. The larger of two presumptive apocytochrome b transcripts is strikingly more abundant in procyclic than bloodstream forms and other mitochondrial transcripts are also differentially abundant between these two forms. In addition, many mitochondrial transcripts appear to be differentially polyadenylated between bloodstream and procyclic forms. We suggest that the mechanisms which regulate the production of the mitochondrial respiratory system in T. brucei involve differential expression of mitochondrial genes.

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