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Plant Mol Biol. 1991 Mar;16(3):397-413.

Multiple nuclear factors interact with upstream sequences of differentially regulated beta-conglycinin genes.

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Department of Biology, Washington University, St. Louis, MO 63130.


The expression of the alpha' and beta subunit genes of beta-conglycinin is differentially regulated during soybean embryo development. Although both are expressed solely in developing seeds during mid to late stages of embryo development, the alpha' subunit is expressed more highly on a per gene basis, and alpha' subunit mRNA begins to accumulate three to five days earlier than beta subunit mRNA. In cultured cotyledons, beta subunit gene(s) respond to changes in methionine or abscisic acid levels, whereas expression of the alpha' subunit gene(s) is unaffected by these changes. To investigate the mechanisms by which these genes are transcriptionally regulated, we examined the interactions of nuclear proteins with upstream sequences from the alpha' and beta subunit genes. Four distinct DNA binding factors were identified in nuclear extracts from developing soybean seeds. These factors are termed Soybean Embryo Factors (SEF) 1 through 4. SEF binding sites are distributed non-uniformly between the alpha' and beta subunit genes, and the amount of protein binding is modulated over the course of embryo development. DNA footprinting revealed the sequences recognized by three of these factors. Factors which behave in a manner similar to that of SEF3 were also identified in nuclear extracts from developing tobacco and sunflower seeds.

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