Our current and proposed research is focused on structure determination of the RNA polymerase II (pol II) transcription pre-initiation complex (PIC). A major breakthrough in our work has led to the assembly and structure determination of a 31-protein PIC, capable of the initiation of transcription at TATA-box promoters. We have determined the structure of the 31-protein PIC by cryo-electron microscopy (cryo-EM) and cross-linking combined with mass spectrometry (XL-MS).
Specific aims for the next project period are: 1) Extension of resolution of the current structure of the 31-protein PIC. Cryo-EM data will be collected with a direct electron detector and processed with new methods that assign distributions of weights rather than unique orientations, and that avoid overfitting. Large heavy atom clusters will be used to enhance the speed and precision of alignment. 2) Structure determination of an actively initiating PIC. Addition of ATP opens a transcription bubble within the PIC and enables the initiation of transcription. 3) Structure determination of PIC containing the TAF complex. PIC formed in the presence of the 14-protein TAF complex is capable of initiation at TATA-less promoters. 4) Structure determination of pol II-Mediator complex (holoenzyme). The 21-protein Mediator communicates regulatory information to pol II. Analysis by cryo-EM and image processing with new methods will result in significant improvement over previous structures. Analysis by XL-MS will reveal interactions responsible for the regulation of transcription. 5) Structure determination of a PIC-Mediator complex. By modification of the assembly procedure for the 31-protein PIC, Mediator could be incorporated in a stoichiometric complex. Preliminary cryo-EM and single particle analysis has confirmed the uniformity of the material. 6) Assembly and structure determination of a complete 66-protein PIC. Having formed complexes of the 31-protein PIC, TAF complex, and Mediator in pairwise combinations, it should be straightforward to assemble all three components in a 66-protein PIC. Analysis by cryo-EM and by XL-MS will be undertaken.

Public Health Relevance

The proposed research is relevant to both fundamental studies and to human health. The methods and results will contribute to the eventual understanding of all aspects of gene transcription. The elucidation of the transcription mechanism and its regulation will enable insights into cancer and other diseases, and will lead to novel therapeutics.

Agency
National Institute of Health (NIH)
Institute
National Institute of Allergy and Infectious Diseases (NIAID)
Type
Research Project (R01)
Project #
5R01AI021144-32
Application #
9189671
Study Section
Macromolecular Structure and Function B Study Section (MSFB)
Program Officer
Singleton, Kentner L
Project Start
1987-05-01
Project End
2018-12-31
Budget Start
2017-01-01
Budget End
2017-12-31
Support Year
32
Fiscal Year
2017
Total Cost
Indirect Cost
Name
Stanford University
Department
Biology
Type
Schools of Medicine
DUNS #
009214214
City
Stanford
State
CA
Country
United States
Zip Code
94304
Robinson, Philip J; Trnka, Michael J; Bushnell, David A et al. (2016) Structure of a Complete Mediator-RNA Polymerase II Pre-Initiation Complex. Cell 166:1411-1422.e16
Eagen, Kyle P; Hartl, Tom A; Kornberg, Roger D (2015) Stable Chromosome Condensation Revealed by Chromosome Conformation Capture. Cell 163:934-46
Lu, Jonathan; Trnka, Michael J; Roh, Soung-Hun et al. (2015) Improved Peak Detection and Deconvolution of Native Electrospray Mass Spectra from Large Protein Complexes. J Am Soc Mass Spectrom 26:2141-51
Murakami, Kenji; Mattei, Pierre-Jean; Davis, Ralph E et al. (2015) Uncoupling Promoter Opening from Start-Site Scanning. Mol Cell 59:133-8
Guan, Shenheng; Trnka, Michael J; Bushnell, David A et al. (2015) Deconvolution method for specific and nonspecific binding of ligand to multiprotein complex by native mass spectrometry. Anal Chem 87:8541-6
Murakami, Kenji; Tsai, Kuang-Lei; Kalisman, Nir et al. (2015) Structure of an RNA polymerase II preinitiation complex. Proc Natl Acad Sci U S A 112:13543-8
Lorch, Yahli; Kornberg, Roger D (2015) Chromatin-remodeling and the initiation of transcription. Q Rev Biophys 48:465-70
Fazal, Furqan M; Meng, Cong A; Murakami, Kenji et al. (2015) Real-time observation of the initiation of RNA polymerase II transcription. Nature 525:274-7
Robinson, Philip J; Trnka, Michael J; Pellarin, Riccardo et al. (2015) Molecular architecture of the yeast Mediator complex. Elife 4:
Schweikhard, Volker; Meng, Cong; Murakami, Kenji et al. (2014) Transcription factors TFIIF and TFIIS promote transcript elongation by RNA polymerase II by synergistic and independent mechanisms. Proc Natl Acad Sci U S A 111:6642-7

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