The mechanism by which Pol II terminates transcription in metazoans is not understood. We show that Pcf11 is directly involved in termination in Drosophila. dPcf11 is concentrated at the 3′ end of the hsp70 gene in cells, and depletion of dPcf11 with RNAi causes Pol II to readthrough the normal region of termination. dPcf11 also localizes to most transcribed loci on polytene chromosomes. Biochemical analysis reveals that dPcf11 dismantles elongation complexes by a CTD-dependent but nucleotide-independent mechanism and that dPcf11 forms a bridge between the CTD and RNA. This bridge appears to be crucial because an anti-CTD antibody, which also dismantles the elongation complex, is found to bridge the CTD to RNA. dPcf11 was observed to inhibit transcription at low, but not high, nucleotide levels, suggesting that dPcf11 dismantles paused elongation complexes. These results provide a biochemical basis for the dependency of termination on pausing and the CTD in metazoans.
All Science Journal Classification (ASJC) codes
- Molecular Biology
- Cell Biology