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Title: Single-molecule tracking of the transcription cycle by sub-second RNA detection
Authors: Zhang, Z.
Revyakin, Andrey
Grimm, J. B.
Lavis, L. D.
Tjian, R.
First Published: 28-Jan-2014
Publisher: eLife Sciences Publications Ltd
Citation: eLife, 2014, 2014 (3)
Abstract: Transcription is an inherently stochastic, noisy, and multi-step process, in which fluctuations at every step can cause variations in RNA synthesis, and affect physiology and differentiation decisions in otherwise identical cells. However, it has been an experimental challenge to directly link the stochastic events at the promoter to transcript production. Here we established a fast fluorescence in situ hybridization (fastFISH) method that takes advantage of intrinsically unstructured nucleic acid sequences to achieve exceptionally fast rates of specific hybridization (~10e7 M-1s-1), and allows deterministic detection of single nascent transcripts. Using a prototypical RNA polymerase, we demonstrated the use of fastFISH to measure the kinetic rates of promoter escape, elongation, and termination in one assay at the single-molecule level, at sub-second temporal resolution. The principles of fastFISH design can be used to study stochasticity in gene regulation, to select targets for gene silencing, and to design nucleic acid nanostructures. © Zhang et al.
DOI Link: 10.7554/eLife.01775.001
eISSN: 2050-084X
Version: Publisher Version
Status: Peer-reviewed
Type: Journal Article
Rights: Copyright © 2014 Zhang et al. This article is distributed under the terms of the Creative Commons Attribution License ( ) , which permits unrestricted use and redistribution provided that the original author and source are credited
Appears in Collections:Published Articles, College of Medicine, Biological Sciences and Psychology

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