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Biomol Eng. 2001 Mar;17(3):87-94.

Target gene identification from expression array data by promoter analysis.

Author information

  • Genomatix Software GmbH, Karlstrasse 55, 80333, Munich, Germany. werner@gsf.de

Abstract

DNA microchips and expression arrays yield enormous amounts of data linking cDNA sequences to gene expression patterns. This now allows the characterization of gene expression in normal and diseased tissues as well as the response of tissues to the application of therapeutic reagents. Software currently exists to analyze DNA array/chip data with respect to corresponding mRNA sequences, which facilitates the precise determination of when and where certain groups of genes are expressed. The information concerning transcriptional regulatory networks responsible for the observed expression patterns is not contained within the cDNA sequences used to generate the arrays, but resides often within the promoter sequences of the individual genes (and/or enhancers). The complete sequence of the human genome will provide the molecular basis for the identification of such regulatory regions. Promoter sequences for specific cDNAs can be obtained reliably from genomic sequences simply by exon mapping. Promoter prediction tools can also be used to locate promoters directly in the genomic sequence in many cases in which cDNAs are 5'-incomplete. Once sufficient numbers of promoter sequences have been obtained, the comparative promoter analysis of the co-regulated genes and groups of genes can be applied in order to generate models describing the higher order levels of the transcription factor binding site organization within these promoter regions. As evident from several examples, this approach can identify promoter modules responsible for the common regulation of promoters solely by the application of bioinformatics methods. Such modules represent the molecular mechanisms through which regulatory networks influence gene expression. Another advantage of this approach is that it also provides a powerful alternative for elucidating functional features of genes with no detectable sequence similarity, by linking them to other genes on the basis of their common promoter structures.

PMID:
11222983
[PubMed - indexed for MEDLINE]
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