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Trends Genet. 2005 May;21(5):260-4.

Transcription attenuation: a highly conserved regulatory strategy used by bacteria.

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  • 1Department of Molecular Microbiology, Instituto de Biotecnología, Universidad Nacional Autónoma de México, Cuernavaca, Morelos 62271, México.


We employed computational analyses to assess the conservation of sequence elements that are believed to be essential for the various transcription-attenuation (termination) mechanisms that are used to regulate expression of families of orthologous genes in bacteria. We searched the upstream sequence of every predicted transcription unit for a transcription attenuator. These were then clustered by the orthology relationships of the nearby structural genes. Many gene families regulated by transcription attenuation were found to be adjacent to a regulatory region that had a binding site for a specific protein, tRNA or small metabolite. Using our methodology, we predict that at least 80 different clusters of orthologous groups (COGs) are significantly regulated by transcription attenuation.

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