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Mol Biochem Parasitol. 1996 May;77(2):193-200.

The promoter for the ribosomal RNA genes of Leishmania chagasi.

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  • 1Department of Biochemistry, University of Iowa, Iowa City 52242, USA.


A promoter for the rRNA genes of Leishmania chagasi was found to be located about 1 kb upstream of the 18S rRNA coding region and immediately downstream of 64 bp tandem repeats. Its approximate boundaries and corresponding transcription start site were determined by transient transfections and primer extension assays. This promoter for RNA polymerase I has differing activities when transfected into various Leishmania species and no activity in Trypanosoma cruzi. Its sequence has no obvious similarities with other known rRNA promoters in Trypanosomatids. Depending on the species, this promoter can be used to increase expression of a protein from a plasmid in Leishmania by as much as 45-fold over that from a plasmid lacking a promoter.

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