Cooperative and competitive interactions of regulatory elements are involved in the control of divergent transcription of human Col4A1 and Col4A2 genes

Reinhold Pollner, Cornelia Schmidt, Gudrun Fischer, Klaus Kühn, Ernst Pöschl

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review

28 Citations (Scopus)


The genes COL4A1 and COL4A2, coding for the two subunit chains alpha1(IV) and alpha2(IV) of collagen IV [alpha1(IV)2alpha2(IV)] are found closely linked on the human chromosome 13 in a unique head-to-head arrangement resulting in opposite strand transcription starting from a shared promoter region. Transient transfection experiments defined a shared promoter and two symmetrically arranged, downstream located and gene-specific activating elements in each gene. The shared promoter does not exhibit any transcriptional activity and efficient transcription depends on the cooperative effect of downstream elements. Mutual inhibitory effects between the two activating elements indicate competitive interactions with the shared promoter. Symmetry, cooperativity and competitivity of cis-elements are also reflected by the binding of transacting factors to the promoter and activating elements. From these data we propose a model for the coordination of divergent transcription of COL4 genes based on the cooperative and competitive interactions of the shared promoter and gene-specific regulating elements.

Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)31-36
Number of pages6
JournalFEBS Letters
Issue number1
Publication statusPublished - 17 Mar 1997


  • Binding, Competitive
  • Collagen
  • Gene Expression Regulation
  • Humans
  • Peptide Chain Initiation, Translational
  • Promoter Regions, Genetic
  • Transcription, Genetic
  • Transcriptional Activation
  • Tumor Cells, Cultured

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