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Genes Dev. 2009 Oct 15;23(20):2371-5. doi: 10.1101/gad.1862609.

Promoter recognition by bacterial alternative sigma factors: the price of high selectivity?

Author information

1
The Rockefeller University, New York, New York 10065, USA.

Abstract

A key step in bacterial transcription initiation is melting of the double-stranded promoter DNA by the RNA polymerase holoenzyme. Primary sigma factors mediate the melting of thousands of promoters through a conserved set of aromatic amino acids. Alternative sigmas, which direct transcription of restricted regulons, lack the full set of melting residues. In this issue of Genes & Development, Koo and colleagues (pp. 2426-2436) show that introducing the primary sigma melting residues into alternative sigmas relaxes their promoter specificity, pointing to a trade-off of reduced promoter melting capacity for increased promoter stringency.

PMID:
19833764
PMCID:
PMC2764498
DOI:
10.1101/gad.1862609
[Indexed for MEDLINE]
Free PMC Article

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