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Epigenetics Chromatin. 2012 Jan 9;5(1):1. doi: 10.1186/1756-8935-5-1.

Enhancers and silencers: an integrated and simple model for their function.

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Sir William Dunn School of Pathology, University of Oxford, South Parks Road, Oxford, OX1 3RE, UK.


Regulatory DNA elements such as enhancers, silencers and insulators are embedded in metazoan genomes, and they control gene expression during development. Although they fulfil different roles, they share specific properties. Herein we discuss some examples and a parsimonious model for their function is proposed. All are transcription units that tether their target promoters close to, or distant from, transcriptional hot spots (or 'factories').

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