Target gene specificity of E2F and pocket protein family members in living cells

J. Wells, K. E. Boyd, C. J. Fry, S. M. Bartley, P. J. Farnham

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review

206 Scopus citations


E2F-mediated transcription is thought to involve binding of an E2F-pocket protein complex to promoters in the G0 phase of the cell cycle and release of the pocket protein in late G1, followed by release of E2F in S phase. We have tested this model by monitoring protein. DNA interactions in living cells using a formaldehyde cross-linking and immunoprecipitation assay. We find that E2F target genes are bound by distinct E2F-pocket protein complexes which change as cells progress through the cell cycle. We also find that certain E2F target gene promoters are bound by pocket proteins when such promoters are transcriptionally active. Our data indicate that the current model applies only to certain E2F target genes and suggest that Rb family members may regulate transcription in both G0 and S phases. Finally, we find that a given promoter can be bound by one of several different E2F-pocket protein complexes at a given time in the cell cycle, suggesting that cell cycle-regulated transcription is a stochastic, not a predetermined, process.

Original languageEnglish (US)
Pages (from-to)5797-5807
Number of pages11
JournalMolecular and Cellular Biology
Issue number16
StatePublished - 2000
Externally publishedYes

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • Molecular Biology
  • Genetics
  • Cell Biology


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