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EMBO J. 2000 Mar 15;19(6):1346-56.

Structure of the central core domain of TFIIEbeta with a novel double-stranded DNA-binding surface.

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Graduate School of Integrated Science, Yokohama City University, 22-2 Seto, Kanazawa-ku, Yokohama 236-0027, USA.


Human general transcription factor TFIIE consists of two subunits, TFIIEalpha and TFIIEbeta. Recently, TFIIEbeta has been found to bind to the region where the promoter starts to open to be single-stranded upon transcription initiation by RNA polymerase II. Here, the central core domain of human TFIIEbeta (TFIIEbetac) has been identified by a limited proteolysis. This solution structure has been determined by NMR. It consists of three helices with a beta hairpin at the C-terminus, resembling the winged helix proteins. However, TFIIEbetac shows a novel double-stranded DNA-binding activity where the DNA-binding surface locates on the opposite side to the previously reported winged helix motif by forming a positively charged furrow. A model will be proposed that TFIIE stabilizes the preinitiation complex by binding not only to the general transcription factors together with RNA polymerase II but also to the promoter DNA, where double-stranded DNA starts to open to be single-stranded upon activation of the preinitiation complex.

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