We have discovered a novel DNA sequence element in Drosophila which is based upon a CTGA tandem repeat. This element has been named the YYRR box to emphasize its dipyrimidine-dipurine nature which is predicted to have unusual structural features. Southern hybridization analysis of genomic DNA indicates the presence of 25-30 copies of the YYRR box in each of three Drosophila species (melanogaster, pseudoobscura, and virilis) and conservation of genomic location within species. Similar analysis of human and rat DNA indicates the presence of YYRR related sequences in mammals as well. YYRR boxes have been localized to two genetic loci in Drosophila: Gld and a gene tentative identified as ted. These two genes exhibit correlated patterns of developmental expression and an identical mutant phenotype. Sequence analysis of the Gld YYRR box in three Drosophila species revealed a high degree of conservation despite its intronlc location.
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