Molecular and General Genetics MGG

, Volume 229, Issue 1, pp 17–26 | Cite as

Binding sites for maize nuclear proteins in the terminal inverted repeats of the Mul transposable element

  • Zuo-Yu Zhao
  • Venkatesan Sundaresan


Nuclear protein extracts from Mu-active, Mu-inactive and non-Mutator lines of maize were used to identify the binding sites for maize nuclear proteins in the terminal inverted repeats (TIR) of the Mul transposable element. We found binding activities of nuclear proteins that specifically interact with both TIRs of the Mu1 element. DNase I footprinting was performed to localize the binding sites. We found that the nuclear proteins from Mu-active lines and non-Mu lines bound to the Mu1 TIR at two different sites, i.e. a 13 by sequence (CGGGAACGGTAAA, designated as site I) and another 8 by sequence (CGGCGTCT, designated as site II). However, the nuclear proteins from Mu-inactive lines bound only one of these sites, i.e. site I. Mobility shift assays with synthetic oligonucleotides containing site I and 11 respectively confirmed the specificities of these binding activities. Site I was shown to be an imperfect direct repeat of a hexamer binding site (CGGGAA CGGTAA). Oligonucleotides containing either of the hexamers showed specific binding activity to nuclear protein from both Mu-active and Mu-inactive lines. The possible role of these proteins in Mu transposition is discussed.

Key words

DNA-protein binding Transposable elements Mutator Maize 


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Copyright information

© Springer-Verlag 1991

Authors and Affiliations

  • Zuo-Yu Zhao
    • 1
  • Venkatesan Sundaresan
    • 1
  1. 1.Cold Spring Harbor LaboratoryCold Spring HarborUSA

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