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Balbiani ring 1 gene in Chironomus tentans. Sequence organization and dynamics of a coding minisatellite


, : Balbiani ring 1 gene in Chironomus tentans. Sequence organization and dynamics of a coding minisatellite. Journal of Molecular Biology, 2252: 349-361

Balbiani ring (BR) genes in diptera encode large secretory proteins and are classical model systems for studies of gene expression. In Chironomus tentans, four closely related BR genes, BR 1, BR 2.1, BR 2.2 and BR 6 form a gene family. The BR genes have been partially characterized and are known to contain long arrays of tandemly arranged repeat units with an hierarchical repeat organization. Here, we report the sequence organization of the complete transcribed part of the BR 1 gene in C. tentans. The gene contains five exons and four introns. Three of the introns are located at the 5' end and the fourth at the 3' end of the gene. Exon 4 is approximately 35,000 bases long and is built completely from tandemly organized repeats. We show that this long repeat block contains two types of related repeat units, beta and gamma. Each type forms a large uninterrupted array, a 5' beta array and a 3' gamma array with a sharp border between them. In the hierarchical repeat structure in each repeat array, all repeats are virtually identical at one level of repetition, but shown differences at the next level. The whole repeat block in the BR 1 gene fluctuates in size between different alleles, but not by more than 10%. In contrast, within the block, the beta and gamma arrays vary in length between 8000 and 29,000 bases in an inverse fashion, together keeping the overall length requirement. We propose that the length of exon 4 is conserved by selection of cross-over products of a given length, and that the internal hierarchical sequence organization in the BR 1 gene is a consequence of the combined action of several different sequence turnover mechanisms, all dependent on the unequal pairing of homologous sequences at different, competing levels of repetition.

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Accession: 002308108

PMID: 1593624

DOI: 10.1016/0022-2836(92)90926-b

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Related references

Paulsson, G.; Höög, C.; Bernholm, K.; Wieslander, L., 1992: Balbiani ring 1 gene in Chironomus tentans. Sequence organization and dynamics of a coding minisatellite. Balbiani ring (BR) genes in diptera encode large secretory proteins and are classical model systems for studies of gene expression. In Chironomus tentans, four closely related BR genes, BR 1, BR 2.1, BR 2.2 and BR 6 form a gene family. The BR gene...

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