The process by which a cell reads the genetic code in its DNA in order to manufacture a protein is complex, involving dozens of enzymes and other biological molecules working together.
Now, research at Cornell University, using the fruit fly as a model system, has confirmed a theory about one step in the process by showing that a protein complex known as FACT is positioned in living cells at sites where chromosomal DNA is unpacked so that its code can be read. It is part of what the researchers call "a sophisticated molecular machine" that is not yet completely understood. The research is reported in the latest edition (Aug. 22) of the journal Science .
"This process is fundamental to the expression of all genes, whether they are normally expressed genes or genes that contribute to disease -- all these use the same machinery," says John T. Lis, Cornell professor of molecular biology and genetics, who supervised the research.
Bill Steele | Cornell News
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