The allosteric, or antiterminator, model proposes that transcription of the poly(A) site triggers conformational changes that destabilize the elongating RNA polymerase, resulting in termination. The torpedo model proposes that an exonuclease degrades the nascent RNA, and eventually catches up to the elongation complex, causing its termination.
Using a novel experimental system to study the function of the exonuclease Rat1 in yeast, Dr. Bentley’s team now shows that while the exonucleases Rat1 and Xrn1 do degrade the nascent RNA transcript, this degradation is not sufficient to cause polymerase termination. Rather, Rat1 helps recruit cleavage and polyadenylation factors that are necessary for termination. "As is often the case with competing hypotheses like the torpedo and allosteric models for transcription termination, neither one can explain the whole story, but aspects of both are correct, and these form the basis for a unified model," explains Dr. Bentley.
Heather Cosel | EurekAlert!
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The Max Planck Institute for Physics (MPP) is opening up a new research field. A workshop from November 21 - 22, 2016 will mark the start of activities for an innovative axion experiment. Axions are still only purely hypothetical particles. Their detection could solve two fundamental problems in particle physics: What dark matter consists of and why it has not yet been possible to directly observe a CP violation for the strong interaction.
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