Conserved enhancer and silencer elements responsible for differential Adh transcription in Drosophila cell lines.

Mol Cell Biol 1990 Jul;10(7):3512-23

Ayer S, Benyajati C

Department of Biology, University of Rochester, New York 14627.

The distal promoter of Adh is differentially expressed in Drosophila tissue culture cell lines. After transfection with an exogenous Adh gene, there was a specific increase in distal alcohol dehydrogenase (ADH) transcripts in ADH-expressing (ADH+) cells above the levels observed in transfected ADH-nonexpressing (ADH-) cells. We used deletion mutations and a comparative transient-expression assay to identify the cis-acting elements responsible for enhanced Adh distal transcription in ADH+ cells. DNA sequences controlling high levels of distal transcription were localized to a 15-base-pair (bp) region nearly 500 bp upstream of the distal RNA start site. In addition, a 61-bp negative cis-acting element was found upstream from and adjacent to the enhancer. When this silencer element was deleted, distal transcription increased only in the ADH+ cell line. These distant upstream elements must interact with the promoter elements, the Adf-1-binding site and the TATA box, as they only influenced transcription when at least one of these two positive distal promoter elements was present. Internal deletions targeted to the Adf-1-binding site or the TATA box reduced transcription in both cell types but did not affect the transcription initiation site. Distal transcription in transfected ADH- cells appears to be controlled primarily through these promoter elements and does not involve the upstream regulatory elements. Evolutionary conservation in distantly related Drosophila species suggests the importance of these upstream elements in correct developmental and tissue-specific expression of ADH.

PMID: 1694013, UI: 90287140