The 130-bp repetitive element (RE) of the rat rDNA (ribosomal RNA-encoding gene) intergenic spacer stimulated the synthesis of rRNA four- to sixfold, in comparison with that of the promoter alone, both in vivo and in vitro, when ligated to the rat rDNA promoter. The addition of increasing amounts of highly purified E1BF (enhancer-1 binding factor), which binds to the rat rDNA promoter and an upstream nonrepetitive enhancer element [Zhang and Jacob, Mol. Cell. Biol. 10 (1990) 5177-5186], to an in vitro transcription system resulted in enhancement of rDNA transcription from the recombinant plasmids containing the promoter or promoter-RE. However, E1BF-mediated stimulation of transcription under the influence of the RE continued at higher concentrations of E1BF than did the control transcription from the promoter alone. The binding affinity of E1BF for the RE was comparable to its affinity for the nonrepetitive far upstream enhancer element previously characterized in our laboratory. The sequences protected by E1BF in the RE differed from those protected by UBF (upstream control element-binding factor), a well characterized pol I transcription factor. These data suggest that E1BF belongs to a class of transcription factors which interact with the promoter and spacer cis-acting RE to modulate rDNA transcription.
- DNase I footprinting
- electrophoretic mobility shift asssay
- primer extension
- ribosomal RNA
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