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Cell cycle gene-specific control of transcription has a critical role in proliferation of primordial germ cells.

Okamura D., Maeda I., Taniguchi H., Tokitake Y., Ikeda M., Ozato K., Mise N., Abe K., Noce T., Izpisua Belmonte J.C., Matsui Y.

Transcription elongation is stimulated by positive transcription elongation factor b (P-TEFb), for which activity is repressed in the 7SK small nuclear ribonucleoprotein (7SK snRNP) complex. We show here a critical role of 7SK snRNP in growth control of primordial germ cells (PGCs). The expression of p15(INK4b), a cyclin-dependent kinase inhibitor (CDKI) gene, in PGCs is selectively activated by P-TEFb and its recruiting molecule, Brd4, when the amount of active P-TEFb is increased due to reduction of the 7SK snRNP, and PGCs consequently undergo growth arrest. These results indicate that CDKI gene-specific control of transcription by 7SK snRNP plays a pivotal role in the maintenance of PGC proliferation.

Genes Dev. 26:2477-2482(2012) [PubMed] [Europe PMC]

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