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Cell. 1995 Oct 6;83(1):137-46.

A mammalian RNA polymerase II holoenzyme containing all components required for promoter-specific transcription initiation.

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Département de Biologie Moléculaire, Sciences II, Université de Genéve, Switzerland.


The protein kinase MO15/CDK7 has recently been shown to be associated with the general transcription factor TFIIH and to be capable of phosphorylating the RNA polymerase II carboxy-terminal domain. Here, we show that a monoclonal MO15/CDK7 antibody coimmunoprecipitates, from a rat liver nuclear extract, all components of the RNA polymerase II transcription apparatus required for initiation at the albumin and adenovirus major late promoters. The immunoprecipitate includes RNA polymerase II, TFIID, TFIIB, TFIIH, TFIIF, and TFIIE, but is devoid of transcriptional activator proteins, such as HNF1, HNF4, and C/EBP alpha. The finding of an autonomously initiating RNA polymerase II holoenzyme in mammalian cells suggests conceptual similarities between transcription initiation in prokaryotes and eukaryotes.

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