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Cell. 1995 Jun 30;81(7):1115-25.

Binding of TAFs to core elements directs promoter selectivity by RNA polymerase II.

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Howard Hughes Medical Institute, Department of Molecular and Cell Biology, University of California at Berkeley 94720-3204, USA.


The mechanisms that govern core promoter recognition and basal transcription efficiency remain poorly understood. Here, we have assessed the potential role of TAFs and the TFIID complex in directing basal promoter function. Reconstituted transcription reactions revealed the ability of TFIID versus TBP to discriminate between distinct core promoters. A comparison of different partial TBP-TAF assemblages established that a trimeric TBP-TAFII250-TAFII150 complex is minimally required for efficient utilization of the initiator and downstream promoter elements. Depending on the promoter structure, TAFs can increase or decrease the stability of TFIID-promoter interactions. These findings suggest that TAFs play a critical role in promoter selectivity and transcription regulation through direct contacts with core promoter elements.

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