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Bioeng Bugs. 2012 Mar-Apr;3(2):120-3. doi: 10.4161/bbug.18530. Epub 2012 Mar 1.

Artificially designed promoters: understanding the role of spatial features and canonical binding sites in transcription.

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Department of Biotechnology; University of Natural Resources and Applied Life Sciences, Vienna, Austria.


The promoter is a key element in gene transcription and regulation. We previously reported that artificial sequences rich in the dinucleotide CpG are sufficient to drive expression in vitro in mammalian cell lines, without requiring canonical binding sites for transcription factor proteins. Here, we report that introducing a promoter organization that alternates in CpGs and regions rich in A and T further increases expression strength, as well as how insertion of specific binding sites makes such sequences respond to induced levels of the transcription factor NFκB. Our findings further contribute to the mechanistic understanding of promoters, as well as how these sequences might be shaped by evolutionary pressure in living organisms.

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