, Volume 219, Issue 1, pp 158-166
Date: 07 Feb 2004

Seed-specific transcription factors ABI3 and FUS3: molecular interaction with DNA

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In Arabidopsis thaliana (L.) Heynh. the seed-specific transcription factors ABI3 and FUS3 have key regulatory functions during the development of mature seeds. The highly conserved RY motif [DNA motif CATGCA(TG)], present in many seed-specific promoters, is an essential target of both regulators. Here we show that, in vitro, the full-length ABI3 protein, as well as FUS3 protein, is able to bind to RY-DNA and that the B3 domains of both transcription factors are necessary and sufficient for the specific interaction with the RY element. Flanking sequences of the RY motif modulate the binding, but the presence of an RY sequence alone allows the specific interaction of ABI3 and FUS3 with the target in vitro. Transcriptional activity of ABI3 and FUS3, measured by transient promoter activation, requires the B3 DNA-binding domain and an activation domain. In addition to the known N-terminal-located activation domain, a second transcription activation domain was found in the B1 region of ABI3.