Higher level organization of individual gene transcription and RNA splicing

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Science  26 Feb 1993:
Vol. 259, Issue 5099, pp. 1326-1330
DOI: 10.1126/science.8446901


Visualization of fibronectin and neurotensin messenger RNAs within mammalian interphase nuclei was achieved by fluorescence hybridization with genomic, complementary DNA, and intron-specific probes. Unspliced transcripts accumulated in one or two sites per nucleus. Fibronectin RNA frequently accumulated in elongated tracks that overlapped and extended well beyond the site of transcription. Splicing appears to occur directly within this RNA track, as evidenced by an unambiguous spatial separation of intron-containing and spliced transcripts. Excised introns for neurotensin RNA appear free to diffuse. The transcription and processing site of the fibronectin gene localized to the nuclear interior and was associated with larger transcript domains in over 88 percent of the cells. These results support a view of nuclear function closely integrated with structure.

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