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Proc Natl Acad Sci U S A. 2014 Jul 22;111(29):10598-603. doi: 10.1073/pnas.1410022111. Epub 2014 Jul 3.

Dynamic regulation of eve stripe 2 expression reveals transcriptional bursts in living Drosophila embryos.

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Department of Molecular and Cell Biology, University of California, Berkeley, CA 94720; and.
Joseph Henry Laboratories of Physics and.
Joseph Henry Laboratories of Physics andLewis-Sigler Institute for Integrative Genomics, Princeton University, Princeton, NJ 08544
Department of Molecular and Cell Biology, University of California, Berkeley, CA 94720; and


We present the use of recently developed live imaging methods to examine the dynamic regulation of even-skipped (eve) stripe 2 expression in the precellular Drosophila embryo. Nascent transcripts were visualized via MS2 RNA stem loops. The eve stripe 2 transgene exhibits a highly dynamic pattern of de novo transcription, beginning with a broad domain of expression during nuclear cycle 12 (nc12), and progressive refinement during nc13 and nc14. The mature stripe 2 pattern is surprisingly transient, constituting just ∼15 min of the ∼90-min period of expression. Nonetheless, this dynamic transcription profile faithfully predicts the limits of the mature stripe visualized by conventional in situ detection methods. Analysis of individual transcription foci reveals intermittent bursts of de novo transcription, with duration cycles of 4-10 min. We discuss a multistate model of transcription regulation and speculate on its role in the dynamic repression of the eve stripe 2 expression pattern during development.

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