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

Splice-junction elements and intronic sequences regulate alternative splicing of the Drosophila myosin heavy chain gene transcript.

The Drosophila muscle myosin heavy chain ( Mhc) gene primary transcript contains five alternatively spliced exon groups (exon 3, 7, 9, 11 and 15), each of which contains two to five mutually exclusive members. Individual muscles typically select a specific alternative exon from each group for incorporation into the processed message. We report here on the cis-regulatory mechanisms that direct the processing of alternative exons in Mhc exon 11 in individual muscles using transgenic reporter constructs, RT-PCR and directed mutagenesis. The 6.0-kilobase exon 11 domain is sufficient to direct the correct processing of exon 11 alternatives, demonstrating that the alternative splicing cis-regulatory elements are local to Mhc exon 11. Mutational analysis of Mhc exon 11 reveals that the alternative exon nonconsensus 5'-splice donors are essential for alternative splicing regulation in general, but do not specify alternative exons for inclusion in individual muscles. Rather, we show, through exon substitutions and deletion analyses, that a 360-nucleotide intronic domain precisely directs the normal processing of one exon, Mhc exon 11e, in the indirect flight muscle. These and other data indicate that alternative exons are regulated in appropriate muscles through interactions between intronic alternative splice-specificity elements, nonconsensus exon 11 splice donors and, likely, novel exon-specific alternative splicing factors.[1]


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