Transcription Factors TFIIF, ELL, and Elongin Negatively Regulate SII-induced Nascent Transcript Cleavage by Non-arrested RNA Polymerase II Elongation Intermediates

B. Jean Elmendorf, A. Shilatifard, Qin Yan, Joan Weliky Conaway, Ronald C. Conaway*

*Corresponding author for this work

Research output: Contribution to journalArticle

31 Scopus citations

Abstract

TFIIF, ELL, and Elongin belong to a class of RNA polymerase II transcription factors that function similarly to activate the rate of elongation by suppressing transient pausing by polymerase at many sites along DNA templates. SII is a functionally distinct RNA polymerase II elongation factor that promotes elongation by reactivating arrested polymerase. Studies of the mechanism of SII action have shown (i) that arrest of RNA polymerase II results from irreversible displacement of the 3′-end of the nascent transcript from the polymerase catalytic site and (ii) that SII reactivates arrested polymerase by inducing endonucleolytic cleavage of the nascent transcript by the polymerase catalytic site thereby creating a new transcript 3′-end that is properly aligned with the catalytic site and can be extended. SII also induces nascent transcript cleavage by paused but non-arrested RNA polymerase II elongation intermediates, leading to the proposal that pausing may result from reversible displacement of the 3′-end of nascent transcripts from the polymerase catalytic site. On the basis of evidence consistent with the model that TFIIF, ELL, and Elongin suppress pausing by preventing displacement of the 3′-end of the nascent transcript from the polymerase catalytic site, we investigated the possibility of cross-talk between SII and transcription factors TFIIF, ELL, and Elongin. These studies led to the discovery that TFIIF, ELL, and Elongin are all capable of inhibiting SII-induced nascent transcript cleavage by non-arrested RNA polymerase II elongation intermediates. Here we present these findings, which bring to light a novel activity associated with TFIIF, ELL, and Elongin and suggest that these transcription factors may expedite elongation not only by increasing the forward rate of nucleotide addition by RNA polymerase II, but also by inhibiting SII-induced nascent transcript cleavage by non-arrested RNA polymerase II elongation intermediates.

Original languageEnglish (US)
Pages (from-to)23109-23114
Number of pages6
JournalJournal of Biological Chemistry
Volume276
Issue number25
DOIs
StatePublished - Jun 22 2001

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • Biochemistry
  • Molecular Biology
  • Cell Biology

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