Zebrafish U6 small nuclear RNA gene promoters contain a SPH element in an unusual location. Academic Article uri icon


  • Promoters for vertebrate small nuclear RNA (snRNA) genes contain a relatively simple array of transcriptional control elements, divided into proximal and distal regions. Most of these genes are transcribed by RNA polymerase II (e.g., U1, U2), whereas the U6 gene is transcribed by RNA polymerase III. Previously identified vertebrate U6 snRNA gene promoters consist of a proximal sequence element (PSE) and TATA element in the proximal region, plus a distal region with octamer (OCT) and SphI postoctamer homology (SPH) elements. We have found that zebrafish U6 snRNA promoters contain the SPH element in a novel proximal position immediately upstream of the TATA element. The zebrafish SPH element is recognized by SPH-binding factor/selenocysteine tRNA gene transcription activating factor/zinc finger protein 143 (SBF/Staf/ZNF143) in vitro. Furthermore, a zebrafish U6 promoter with a defective SPH element is inefficiently transcribed when injected into embryos.

published proceedings

  • Gene

author list (cited authors)

  • Halbig, K. M., Lekven, A. C., & Kunkel, G. R.

citation count

  • 10

complete list of authors

  • Halbig, Kari M||Lekven, Arne C||Kunkel, Gary R

publication date

  • January 2008

published in