Structural and functional characterization of a transcription-enhancing sequence element in the rbcL gene of the Chlamydomonas chloroplast genome
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The structure and function of a transcription-enhancing sequence element in the coding region of the Chlamydomonas reinhardtii rbcL gene was analyzed in Chlamydomonas chloroplast transformants in vivo. The enhancer sequence is contained within a DNA segment extending from position +108 to position +143, relative to the start site of rbcL gene transcription. The sequence remains functional when inverted or when placed 34 bp closer to or 87 bp further downstream of the basic rbcL promoter. However, it does not function from a site about 250 bp downstream of its original location. Besides promoting transcription initiation from the rbcL promoter, the element is able to augment transcription from the promoter of the Chlamydomonas chloroplast atpB gene, but has an inhibitory effect on transcription from the promoter of the chloroplast ribosomal RNA genes. The results suggest that the enhancer-like sequence acts upon transcription initiation in a position-specific and promoter type-specific manner.
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