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Microbes Infect. 2003 Nov;5(13):1231-40.

Transcription in kinetoplastid protozoa: why be normal?

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  • 1Department of Microbiology, Immunology and Molecular Genetics, University of California at Los Angeles, 609 Charles E. Young Drive East, Los Angeles, CA 90095-1489, USA. dc@ucla.edu


Transcription in the kinetoplastid protozoa shows substantial variation from the paradigms of eukaryotic gene expression, including polycistronic transcription, a paucity of RNA polymerase (RNAP) II promoters, no qualitative regulated transcription initiation for most protein-coding genes, transcription of some protein-coding genes by RNAP I, an exclusive subnuclear location for VSG transcription, the dependence of small nuclear RNA gene transcription on an upstream tRNA gene, and the synthesis of mitochondrial tRNAs in the nucleus. Here, we present a broad overview of what is known about transcription in the kinetoplastids and what has yet to be determined.

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