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FEBS Lett. 1994 May 16;344(2-3):251-4.

The impact of 5'-CG-3' methylation on the activity of different eukaryotic promoters: a comparative study.

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Institut für Genetik, Universität zu Köln, Germany.


The inhibiting or inactivating effects of position-specific promoter methylation in different viral or human cellular promoters Ad2 E2AL, SV40, LTR-MMTV, HSV-tk, TNF alpha) have been compared by in vitro 5'-CCGG-3' methylation by M-HpaII or the M-SssI DNA-methyltransferase, respectively. In most promoters, 5'-CG-3' methylation reduces activity to a few percent of that of mock-methylated controls. The number of 5'-CG-3' dinucleotides in a promoter does not strictly correlate with the extent of methylation inhibition. The LTR-MMTV promoter, which lacks 5'-CG-3' dinucleotides, is not affected by methylation. The late E2A promoter of Ad2 DNA cannot be inactivated by 5'-CCGG-3' methylation when the construct carries the strong cytomegalovirus enhancer devoid of this sequence. In contrast, 5'-CG-3' methylation shuts this promoter off even in the presence of this enhancer.

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