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News From the Field

Gene-transcription Machinery Seen Poised for Action, Held in Check Until Needed


July 25, 2007

Shelley Berger
For some time, scientists have been tracking down the sequence of biochemical steps required to attract and assemble at the head end of a gene, the molecular machinery needed to transcribe that gene to put to work the information it encodes. New findings suggest that the gene-transcription machinery, once in place, can remain poised for action--but held in check--until a triggering signal sends it on its way down the linear DNA molecule.
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The Wistar Institute

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