Presenter: Debora Tenenbaum, Ph.D. Student, Brandis University
Topic: Transcriptional coupling of neighboring genes in bacteria
Many cellular functions require the coordinated activity of multiple genes. In bacteria, genes within operons are co-transcribed in an all-or-nothing way. However, it is often the case that more control over gene expression is required, and the activity of multiple operons/genes needs to be coordinated. There is evidence that functionally-related operons/genes tend to be spatially clustered in the bacterial genome. Different mechanisms that can couple transcription of adjacent transcription units have been studied. In this talk, I will propose a novel mechanism that could serve to transcriptionally couple neighboring genes, based on previous in vitro observations of the post-termination behavior of the E.coli RNA polymerase. I will present a combination of analytical calculations, stochastic simulations, and single-molecule microscopy experiments that I used to characterize the spatial and temporal coupling scales for the proposed mechanism.