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Reference: Tan-Wong SM, et al. (2012) Gene loops enhance transcriptional directionality. Science 338(6107):671-5

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Abstract

Eukaryotic genomes are extensively transcribed, forming both messenger RNAs (mRNAs) and noncoding RNAs (ncRNAs). ncRNAs made by RNA polymerase II often initiate from bidirectional promoters (nucleosome-depleted chromatin) that synthesize mRNA and ncRNA in opposite directions. We demonstrate that, by adopting a gene-loop conformation, actively transcribed mRNA encoding genes restrict divergent transcription of ncRNAs. Because gene-loop formation depends on a protein factor (Ssu72) that coassociates with both the promoter and the terminator, the inactivation of Ssu72 leads to increased synthesis of promoter-associated divergent ncRNAs, referred to as Ssu72-restricted transcripts (SRTs). Similarly, inactivation of individual gene loops by gene mutation enhances SRT synthesis. We demonstrate that gene-loop conformation enforces transcriptional directionality on otherwise bidirectional promoters.

Reference Type
Journal Article | Research Support, Non-U.S. Gov't | Research Support, N.I.H., Extramural
Authors
Tan-Wong SM, Zaugg JB, Camblong J, Xu Z, Zhang DW, Mischo HE, Ansari AZ, Luscombe NM, Steinmetz LM, Proudfoot NJ
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