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Cell. 1992 Feb 21;68(4):755-67.

Promoter-selective activation domains in Oct-1 and Oct-2 direct differential activation of an snRNA and mRNA promoter.

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  • 1Cold Spring Harbor Laboratory, New York 11724.


The promoter specificity of transcriptional activators is generally thought to be conferred by the specificity of the DNA-binding domain, which brings the activation domain to the appropriate promoter sequence. We show here, however, that Oct-1 and Oct-2 can differentially activate transcription not through DNA binding specificity but instead through the use of promoter-selective activation domains. These distinct activation domains lead to stimulation of the U2 small nuclear RNA promoter by Oct-1 and an mRNA promoter by Oct-2. An Oct-2 variant, called Oct-2B, differs from Oct-2 by an Oct-1-related C-terminal extension that results from alternative splicing. This variant gains the ability to activate the U2 small nuclear RNA promoter. Thus, the promoter selectivity of a transcriptional activator can be changed, in this case by alternative splicing, without affecting its DNA binding specificity.

[PubMed - indexed for MEDLINE]
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