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EMBO J. 1988 Apr;7(4):1071-9.

Transcription fraction TFIIIC can regulate differential Xenopus 5S RNA gene transcription in vitro.

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Department of Embryology, Carnegie Institution of Washington, Baltimore, MD 21210.


An extract of whole oocytes (oocyte S150) differentially transcribes Xenopus oocyte and somatic 5S RNA genes. In the oocyte S150, transcription complexes with different stabilities are assembled onto oocyte and somatic 5S DNA. The stability of the transcription complex is dependent on activities present in a fraction containing transcription factor TFIIIC. This fraction stabilizes the binding of the positive transcription factor TFIIIA to a somatic 5S RNA gene much more efficiently than it does to an oocyte gene. The oocyte S150 transcription extract is deficient in TFIIIC such that supplementation with a fraction enriched in this transcription factor selectively stimulates oocyte 5S DNA transcription. Previously it has been shown that an egg extract deficient in TFIIIA selectively transcribes somatic 5S RNA genes. Thus under conditions where there is differential stability of transcription complexes, limitation of either TFIIIA or TFIIIC may exaggerate the differential expression of two genes.

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