An adaptor from translational to transcriptional control enables predictable assembly of complex regulation

Chang C. Liu, Lei Qi, Julius B. Lucks, Thomas H. Segall-Shapiro, Denise Wang, Vivek K. Mutalik, Adam P. Arkin*

*Corresponding author for this work

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review

48 Scopus citations

Abstract

Bacterial regulators of transcriptional elongation are versatile units for building custom genetic switches, as they control the expression of both coding and noncoding RNAs, act on multigene operons and can be predictably tethered into higher-order regulatory functions (a property called composability). Yet the less versatile bacterial regulators of translational initiation are substantially easier to engineer. To bypass this tradeoff, we have developed an adaptor that converts regulators of translational initiation into regulators of transcriptional elongation in Escherichia coli. We applied this adaptor to the construction of several transcriptional attenuators and activators, including a small molecule-triggered attenuator and a group of five mutually orthogonal riboregulators that we assembled into NOR gates of two, three or four RNA inputs. Continued application of our adaptor should produce large collections of transcriptional regulators whose inherent composability can facilitate the predictable engineering of complex synthetic circuits.

Original languageEnglish (US)
Pages (from-to)1088-1094
Number of pages7
JournalNature Methods
Volume9
Issue number11
DOIs
StatePublished - Nov 2012

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • Biotechnology
  • Biochemistry
  • Molecular Biology
  • Cell Biology

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