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Cell. 1999 Sep 17;98(6):791-8.

Electron crystal structure of an RNA polymerase II transcription elongation complex.

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Department of Structural Biology, Stanford University School of Medicine, California 94305, USA.


The structure of an actively transcribing complex, containing yeast RNA polymerase II with associated template DNA and product RNA, was determined by electron crystallography. Nucleic acid, in all likelihood the "transcription bubble" at the active center of the enzyme, occupies a previously noted 25 A channel in the protein structure. Details are indicative of a roughly 90 degrees bend of the DNA between upstream and downstream regions. The DNA apparently lies entirely on one face of the polymerase, rather than passing through a hole to the opposite side, as previously suggested.

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