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J Biol Chem. 1991 Dec 5;266(34):22796-9.

Multiple cis-acting elements are required for RNA polymerase III transcription of the gene encoding H1 RNA, the RNA component of human RNase P.

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Department of Molecular Biology and Microbiology, Case Western Reserve University School of Medicine, Cleveland, Ohio 44106.


In humans, the H1 RNA, the RNA subunit of RNase P, is synthesized by RNA polymerase III. We have used block replacement mutagenesis to identify the sequences necessary for in vitro transcription of H1 RNA. We find that multiple cis-acting elements located in the H1 RNA 5'-flanking region are necessary for H1 RNA synthesis; no internal sequences are essential. Required cis-acting elements include sequences resembling proximal sequence element, distal sequence element, and TATA motifs. In this respect, the H1 RNA promoter is similar in structure to the promoters of the genes encoding the U6 snRNA, the 7 SK RNA and the MRP RNA. However, our mutational analysis indicates that the H1 promoter is unexpectedly complex, with several additional cis-acting elements spanning nearly 70 base pairs of the H1 RNA gene 5'-flanking sequence.

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