Differential DNA sequence recognition is a determinant of specificity in homeotic gene action

Stephen C Ekker, D. P. Von Kessler, P. A. Beachy

Research output: Contribution to journalArticle

123 Citations (Scopus)

Abstract

The homeotic genes of Drosophila encode transcriptional regulatory proteins that specify distinct segment identities. Previous studies have implicated the homeodomain as a major determinant of biological specificity within these proteins, but have not established the physical basis of this specificity. We show here that the homeodomains encoded by the Ultrabithorax and Deformed homeotic genes bind optimally to distinct DNA sequences and have mapped the determinants responsible for differential recognition. We further show that relative transactivation by these two proteins in a simple in vivo system can differ by nearly two orders of magnitude. Such differences in DNA sequence recognition and target activation provide a biochemical basis for at least part of the biological specificity of homeotic gene action.

Original languageEnglish (US)
Pages (from-to)4059-4072
Number of pages14
JournalEMBO Journal
Volume11
Issue number11
StatePublished - 1992
Externally publishedYes

Fingerprint

Homeobox Genes
DNA sequences
Genes
Proteins
Transcriptional Activation
Drosophila
Chemical activation

Keywords

  • Deformed gene
  • Development
  • DNA recognition
  • Homeodomain
  • Ultrabithorax

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • Cell Biology
  • Genetics

Cite this

Differential DNA sequence recognition is a determinant of specificity in homeotic gene action. / Ekker, Stephen C; Von Kessler, D. P.; Beachy, P. A.

In: EMBO Journal, Vol. 11, No. 11, 1992, p. 4059-4072.

Research output: Contribution to journalArticle

Ekker, Stephen C ; Von Kessler, D. P. ; Beachy, P. A. / Differential DNA sequence recognition is a determinant of specificity in homeotic gene action. In: EMBO Journal. 1992 ; Vol. 11, No. 11. pp. 4059-4072.
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