The R-operon: A model of repetitive DNA-organized transcriptional compartmentation of eukaryotic chromosomes for coordinated gene expression

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    In eukaryotic genomes, it is essential to coordinate the activity of genes that function together to fulfill the same biological processes. Genomic organization likely plays a key role in coordinating transcription of different genes. However, little is known about how co-regulated genes are organized in the cell nucleus and how the chromosomal organization facilitates the co-regulation of different genes. I propose that eukaryotic genomes are organized into repeat assembly (RA)-based structural domains (“R-operons”) in the nuclear space. R-operons result from the interaction of homologous DNA repeats. In an R-operon, genes in different loci of the linear genome are brought into spatial vicinity and co-regulated by the same pool of transcription factors. This type of large-scale chromosomal organization may provide a mechanism for functional compartmentation of chromosomes to facilitate the transcriptional coordination of gene expression.

    Original languageEnglish (US)
    Article number16
    Issue number4
    StatePublished - Apr 22 2016



    • Chromatin
    • Chromosome
    • DNA repeat
    • Gene expression
    • Operon
    • Repetitive DNA
    • Transcription
    • Transcription factory
    • Transposon

    ASJC Scopus subject areas

    • Genetics
    • Genetics(clinical)

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