RNA Polymerase III transcription in Leishmania major

Summary

Principal Investigator: SANTIAGO MARTINEZ CALVILLO
Country: Mexico
Abstract: Leishmania is a parasitic protozoan (order Kinetoplastida) that causes a spectrum of disease ranging from asymptomatic to lethal, resulting in widespread human suffering and death. LmjF presents atypical mechanisms of gene expression, since transcription seems to initiate in only a few regions per chromosome, generating long polycistronic transcripts that are processed by trans-splicing to produce mature mRNAs. Little is known in kinetoplastids about transcription by RNA Polymerase III (Pol III), which transcribes several conserved and abundant small RNAs (such as tRNAs, 5S rRNAs and snRNAs) that play critical roles in cell metabolism. Our main objective is to characterize Pol III promoters and transcriptional complexes in Leishmania major Friedlin (LmjF), whose genome sequence has been recently completed. The specific hypothesis is that Pol III promoters and transcription factors in LmjF (and other kinetoplastids) differ considerably from those present on other eukaryotes. The specific aims are to: 1. Analyze transcription of Pol III genes in LmjF. Transcription start sites will be mapped by 5'-RACE, and termination sites localized by RT-PCR with poly(A)-tailed RNA. Nuclear run-on analysis will be performed with single-stranded DNA fragments spanning coding and intergenic regions. Promoter activity will be tested by transient-transfection studies. 2. Examine the DNA-protein interactions between the Pol III promoters and the transcription machinery. DNA-protein interactions will be analyzed by electrophoretic mobility shift assays. DNase I footprinting assays will be carried out to identify the specific DNA sequences that interact with the Pol III complex. 3. Identify the protein components of the Pol III complex in LmjF. The tandem affinity purification (TAP-tag) method will be used to purify Pol III transcriptional complexes. The protein components in these complexes will be identified by mass-spectrometry analysis.
Funding Period: 2005-05-01 - 2010-04-30
more information: NIH RePORT

Top Publications

  1. pmc Gene organization and sequence analyses of transfer RNA genes in Trypanosomatid parasites
    Norma E Padilla-Mejía
    Unidad de Biomedicina, Facultad de Estudios Superiores Iztacala, Universidad Nacional Autonoma de Mexico, Av de los Barrios 1, Col Los Reyes Iztacala, Tlalnepantla, Edo de Mexico, Mexico
    BMC Genomics 10:232. 2009
  2. pmc Gene expression in trypanosomatid parasites
    Santiago Martinez-Calvillo
    Unidad de Biomedicina, Facultad de Estudios Superiores Iztacala, Universidad Nacional Autonoma de Mexico, Av de los Barrios 1, Col Los Reyes Iztacala, Tlalnepantla, Edo de Mexico, CP 54090, Mexico
    J Biomed Biotechnol 2010:525241. 2010

Scientific Experts

  • SANTIAGO MARTINEZ CALVILLO
  • Santiago Martinez-Calvillo
  • Luis E Florencio-Martínez
  • Rebeca G Manning-Cela
  • Elisa E Figueroa-Angulo
  • Norma E Padilla-Mejía
  • Juan C Vizuet-de-Rueda
  • Rosaura Hernandez-Rivas
  • Peter J Myler

Detail Information

Publications2

  1. pmc Gene organization and sequence analyses of transfer RNA genes in Trypanosomatid parasites
    Norma E Padilla-Mejía
    Unidad de Biomedicina, Facultad de Estudios Superiores Iztacala, Universidad Nacional Autonoma de Mexico, Av de los Barrios 1, Col Los Reyes Iztacala, Tlalnepantla, Edo de Mexico, Mexico
    BMC Genomics 10:232. 2009
    ..To analyze the sequences and genomic organization of tRNA genes and other Pol III-transcribed genes, we have performed an in silico analysis of the Tritryps genome sequences...
  2. pmc Gene expression in trypanosomatid parasites
    Santiago Martinez-Calvillo
    Unidad de Biomedicina, Facultad de Estudios Superiores Iztacala, Universidad Nacional Autonoma de Mexico, Av de los Barrios 1, Col Los Reyes Iztacala, Tlalnepantla, Edo de Mexico, CP 54090, Mexico
    J Biomed Biotechnol 2010:525241. 2010
    ..Here, we review and comment on the most recent findings related to transcription initiation and termination in trypanosomatid protozoa...