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Cell. 1996 May 31;85(5):773-9.

Two-dimensional crystallography of TFIIB- and IIE-RNA polymerase II complexes: implications for start site selection and initiation complex formation.

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Department of Structural Biology, Stanford University School of Medicine, California 94305-5400, USA.


Transcription factors IIB (TFIIB) and IIE (TFIIE) bound to RNA polymerase II have been revealed by electron crystallography in projection at 15.7 A resolution. The results lead to simple hypotheses for the roles of these factors in the initiation of transcription. TFIIB is suggested to define the distance from TATA box to transcription start site by bringing TATA DNA in contact with polymerase at that distance from the active center of the enzyme. TFIIE is suggested to participate in a key conformational switch occurring at the active center upon polymerase-DNA interaction.

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