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Tandem Transcription and Translation Regulatory Sensing of Uncharged Tryptophan tRNA

Science  11 Jul 2003:
Vol. 301, Issue 5630, pp. 211-213
DOI: 10.1126/science.1084902

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Abstract

The Bacillus subtilis AT (anti-TRAP) protein inhibits the regulatory protein TRAP (trp RNA-binding attenuation protein), thereby eliminating transcription termination in the leader region of the trp operon. Transcription of the AT operon is activated by uncharged tryptophan transfer RNA (tRNATrp). Here we show that translation of AT also is regulated by uncharged tRNATrp. A 10-residue coding region containing three consecutive tryptophan codons is located immediately preceding the AT structural gene. Completion of translation of this coding region inhibits AT synthesis, whereas incomplete translation increases AT production. Tandem sensing of uncharged tRNATrp therefore regulates synthesis of AT, which in turn regulates TRAP's ability to inhibit trp operon expression.

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