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Hoffmann, R. A wiki for the life sciences where authorship matters. Nature Genetics (2008)

Evidence for novel processing of the anaerobically inducible dicistronic focA-pfl mRNA transcript in Escherichia coli.

The anaerobically inducible dicistronic focA-pfl operon is transcribed from three co-ordinately regulated promoters that are located 5' of the operon. Remarkably, the 5' ends of four further highly abundant operon-internal transcripts are located within the focA gene, with a fifth transcript mapping in the intergenic region between focA and pfl. The findings of this study demonstrate that the bulk of these five operon-internal transcripts are the result of processing. Processing was independent of the broad-spectrum endoribonucleases associated with mRNA turnover and still occurred when the upstream regulatory region of the operon was replaced with two different heterologous promoters recognized by Escherichia coli core RNA polymerase, including the tetP promoter. However, when the T7Phi10 promoter was introduced upstream of the focA-pfl operon, mainly full-length transcript and a minor amount of two processing products were observed. T7 RNA polymerase mutants that exhibit reduced elongation speed did not restore the wild-type transcript-processing pattern. Moreover, processing was independent of focA translation. Taken together, these data suggest that processing of the focA-pfl transcripts occurs by a novel mechanism that might require the action of E. coli core RNA polymerase.[1]


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