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Genet Res Int. 2011;2011:206290. doi: 10.4061/2011/206290. Epub 2011 Oct 12.

The Transition of Poised RNA Polymerase II to an Actively Elongating State Is a "Complex" Affair.

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  • 1Biochemistry and Molecular Biology, Colorado State University, Fort Collins, CO 80523-1870, USA.


The initial discovery of the occupancy of RNA polymerase II at certain genes prior to their transcriptional activation occurred a quarter century ago in Drosophila. The preloading of these poised complexes in this inactive state is now apparent in many different organisms across the evolutionary spectrum and occurs at a broad and diverse set of genes. In this paper, we discuss the genetic and biochemical efforts in S. cerevisiae to describe the conversion of these poised transcription complexes to the active state for productive elongation. The accumulated evidence demonstrates that a multitude of coactivators and chromatin remodeling complexes are essential for this transition.

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