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Genes Dev. 2000 Apr 1;14(7):792-803.

P-TEFb kinase recruitment and function at heat shock loci.

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  • 1Department of Molecular Biology and Genetics, Biotechnology Building, Cornell University, Ithaca, New York 14853, USA. JTL10@cornell.edu

Abstract

P-TEFb, a heterodimer of the kinase Cdk9 and cyclin T, was isolated as a factor that stimulates formation of productive transcription elongation complexes in vitro. Here, we show that P-TEFb is located at >200 distinct sites on Drosophila polytene chromosomes. Upon heat shock, P-TEFb, like the regulatory factor HSF, is rapidly recruited to heat shock loci, and this recruitment is blocked in an HSF mutant. Yet, HSF binding to DNA is not sufficient to recruit P-TEFb in vivo, and HSF and P-TEFb immunostainings within a heat shock locus are not coincident. Insight to the function of P-TEFb is offered by experiments showing that the direct recruitment of a Gal4-binding domain P-TEFb hybrid to an hsp70 promoter in Drosophila cells is sufficient to activate transcription in the absence of heat shock. Analyses of point mutants show this P-TEFb stimulation is dependent on Cdk9 kinase activity and on Cdk9's interaction with cyclin T. These results, coupled with the frequent colocalization of P-TEFb and the hypophosphorylated form of RNA polymerase II (Pol II) found at promoter-pause sites, support a model in which P-TEFb acts to stimulate promoter-paused Pol II to enter into productive elongation.

PMID:
10766736
[PubMed - indexed for MEDLINE]
PMCID:
PMC316500
Free PMC Article
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