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Mol Cell. 1997 Dec;1(1):141-50.

Role of nucleosome remodeling factor NURF in transcriptional activation of chromatin.

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Laboratory of Molecular Cell Biology, National Cancer Institute, National Institutes of Health, Bethesda, Maryland 20892-4255, USA.


The Drosophila nucleosome remodeling factor (NURF) is a protein complex of four subunits that assists transcription factor-mediated perturbation of nucleosomes in an ATP-dependent manner. We have investigated the role of NURF in activating transcription from a preassembled chromatin template and have found that NURF is able to facilitate transcription mediated by a GAL4 derivative carrying both a DNA binding and an activator domain. Interestingly, once nucleosome remodeling by the DNA binding factor is accomplished, a high level of NURF activity is not continuously required for recruitment of the general transcriptional machinery and transcription for at least 100 nucleotides. Our results provide direct evidence that NURF is able to assist gene activation in a chromatin context, and identify a stage of NURF dependence early in the process leading to transcriptional initiation.

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