A relationship between DNA helix stability and recognition sites for RNA polymerase

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Science  03 Aug 1979:
Vol. 205, Issue 4405, pp. 508-511
DOI: 10.1126/science.377494


The RNA polymerase binding sites on the DNA of (i) the aroE-trkA-spc segment of the Escherichia coli genome, (ii) transposon Tn3, (iii) plasmid ColE1, and (iv) coliphage lambda were mapped by electron microscopy, with the use of the BAC technique; these maps were compared with the maps of the early-melting regions for the same genomes. The results indicate that in all these cases the binding sites for the E. coli RNA polymerase lie preferentially in the early melting regions of DNA. These data indicate that helix stability may be an important feature of the multipartite nature of the promoter structure.