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Curr Opin Genet Dev. 2009 Dec;19(6):579-85. doi: 10.1016/j.gde.2009.10.003. Epub 2009 Nov 11.

Evolution of transcriptional control in mammals.

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Cancer Research UK, Cambridge Research Institute, Li Ka Shing Centre, Robinson Way, Cambridge CB2 0RE, UK.


Changes in gene expression directed by transcriptional regulators can give rise to new phenotypes. While gene expression profiles can be maintained across large evolutionary distances, transcription factor-DNA interactions diverge rapidly. The application of new genome-wide methodologies has begun refining our global understanding of when and where mammalian transcription factors interact with DNA, thereby providing new insight into the mechanisms of transcriptional evolution. The interplay between cis and trans regulation of gene expression is an increasingly active area of investigation, and recent studies suggest that mutations in cis-regulatory DNA can explain many inter-species differences in gene expression.

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