Transcriptional noise and the fidelity of initiation by RNA polymerase II

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Eukaryotes transcribe much of their genomes, but little is known about the fidelity of transcriptional initiation by RNA polymerase II in vivo. I suggest that 90% of Pol II initiation events in yeast represent transcriptional noise, and that the specificity of initiation is comparable to that of DNA-binding proteins and other biological processes. This emphasizes the need to develop criteria that distinguish transcriptional noise from transcription with a biological function.

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Acknowledgements

I thank R. Kornberg, Z. Moqtaderi, M. Oettinger, A. Sandelin, J.Svejstrup & J. Wade for helpful discussions and comments on the manuscript.

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Struhl, K. Transcriptional noise and the fidelity of initiation by RNA polymerase II. Nat Struct Mol Biol 14, 103–105 (2007) doi:10.1038/nsmb0207-103

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