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Role of DNA sequence based structural features of promoters in transcription initiation and gene expression

Authors
Journal
Current Opinion in Structural Biology
0959-440X
Publisher
Elsevier
Volume
25
Identifiers
DOI: 10.1016/j.sbi.2014.01.007
Disciplines
  • Biology
  • Computer Science
  • Engineering

Abstract

Regulatory information for transcription initiation is present in a stretch of genomic DNA, called the promoter region that is located upstream of the transcription start site (TSS) of the gene. The promoter region interacts with different transcription factors and RNA polymerase to initiate transcription and contains short stretches of transcription factor binding sites (TFBSs), as well as structurally unique elements. Recent experimental and computational analyses of promoter sequences show that they often have non-B-DNA structural motifs, as well as some conserved structural properties, such as stability, bendability, nucleosome positioning preference and curvature, across a class of organisms. Here, we briefly describe these structural features, the differences observed in various organisms and their possible role in regulation of gene expression.

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