When is a transcription factor a NAP?
Item Type:Journal Article
Citation:Dorman CJ, Schumacher MA, Bush MJ, Brennan RG, Buttner MJ, When is a transcription factor a NAP?, Current Opinion in Microbiology, 55, 2020, 26 - 33
Dorman et al. 2020 COiM 55 26-33.pdf (PDF) 1.998Mb
Proteins that regulate transcription often also play an architectural role in the genome. Thus, it has been difficult to define with precision the distinctions between transcription factors and nucleoid-associated proteins (NAPs). Anachronistic descriptions of NAPs as 'histone-like' implied an organizational function in a bacterial chromatin-like complex. Definitions based on protein abundance, regulatory mechanisms, target gene number, or the features of their DNA-binding sites are insufficient as marks of distinction, and trying to distinguish transcription factors and NAPs based on their ranking within regulatory hierarchies or positions in gene-control networks is also unsatisfactory. The terms 'transcription factor' and 'NAP' are ad hoc operational definitions with each protein lying along a spectrum of structural and functional features extending from highly specific actors with few gene targets to those with a pervasive influence on the transcriptome. The Streptomyces BldC protein is used to illustrate these issues.
Author: Dorman, Charles
Type of material:Journal Article
Series/Report no:Current Opinion in Microbiology
Availability:Full text available