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Trends Genet. 2014 Jul;30(7):287-97. doi: 10.1016/j.tig.2014.04.008. Epub 2014 May 23.

Spatial organization of transcription in bacterial cells.

Author information

1
Department of Biophysics and Biophysical Chemistry, Johns Hopkins University School of Medicine, Baltimore, MD, USA.
2
Department of Biophysics and Biophysical Chemistry, Johns Hopkins University School of Medicine, Baltimore, MD, USA. Electronic address: xiao@jhmi.edu.

Abstract

Prokaryotic transcription has been extensively studied over the past half a century. However, there often exists a gap between the structural, mechanistic description of transcription obtained from in vitro biochemical studies, and the cellular, phenomenological observations from in vivo genetic studies. It is now accepted that a living bacterial cell is a complex entity; the heterogeneous cellular environment is drastically different from the homogenous, well-mixed situation in vitro. Where molecules are inside a cell may be important for their function; hence, the spatial organization of different molecular components may provide a new means of transcription regulation in vivo, possibly bridging this gap. In this review, we survey current evidence for the spatial organization of four major components of transcription [genes, transcription factors, RNA polymerase (RNAP) and RNAs] and critically analyze their biological significance.

KEYWORDS:

RNA polymerase; chromosome conformation capture; prokaryotic transcription; single molecule; spatial organization; transcription factors

PMID:
24862529
DOI:
10.1016/j.tig.2014.04.008
[Indexed for MEDLINE]

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