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Eur J Biochem. 2003 Apr;270(8):1791-801.

Sequences downstream of the transcription initiation site are important for proper initiation and regulation of mouse ribonucleotide reductase R2 gene transcription.

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1
Department of Medical Biochemistry and Biophysics, Umeå University, Sweden.

Abstract

Ribonucleotide reductase is essential for the synthesis of all four dNTPs required for DNA replication. The enzyme is composed of two proteins, R1 and R2, which are both needed for activity. Expression of the R1 and R2 mRNAs is restricted to the S-phase of the cell cycle, but the R1 and R2 promoters show no obvious sequence homologies that could indicate coordination of transcription. Here we study initiation of transcription at the natural mouse R2 promoter, which contains an atypical TATA-box with the sequence TTTAAA, using a combination of in vivo reporter gene assays and in vitro transcription. Our results indicate that in constructs where sequences from the R2 5'-UTR are present, the mouse R2 TATA-box is dispensable both for unregulated, basal transcription from the R2 promoter and for S-phase specific activity. Instead, initiation of R2 transcription is directed by sequences downstream from the transcription start. We report that this region contains a conserved palindrome sequence that interacts with TAFIIs. This interaction down-regulates basal transcription from the R2 promoter, both in the absence and in the presence of the TATA-box.

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