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EMBO J. 1991 Jul;10(7):1777-86.

Light-inducible and constitutively expressed DNA-binding proteins recognizing a plant promoter element with functional relevance in light responsiveness.

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Max-Planck-Institut für Züchtungsforschung, Abteilung Biochemie, Köln, FRG.


Four cis-acting elements, designated as Boxes I, II, III and IV, have previously been identified as functionally relevant components of the light-responsive chalcone synthase (CHS) promoter in parsley (Petroselinum crispum). This paper describes the isolation of three cDNAs encoding proteins which bind specifically to Box II, one of two cis-acting elements found within a 52 bp CHS promoter region shown here to be sufficient for light responsiveness in parsley. The deduced amino acid sequences of all three proteins reveal conserved basic and leucine zipper domains characteristic of transcription factors of the bZIP class. Nucleotide sequences recognized by these factors contain an ACGT motif common to many cis-acting elements. Therefore, we have termed the proteins CPRF-1, -2 and -3 (Common Plant Regulatory Factor). The characteristics of CPRF-1 binding to Box II and the timing of transient CPRF-1 mRNA accumulation during light exposure of previously dark-grown parsley cells are consistent with the hypothesis that this factor participates in the light-mediated activation of the CHS gene in parsley.

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