When activators repress and repressors activate: a qualitative analysis of the Shea-Ackers model. (English) Zbl 1166.92021

Summary: The concept of activation in transcriptional regulation is based on the assumption that product mRNA increases monotonically as a function of regulator concentration. We analyze the M. Shea and G. Ackers model [J. Mol. Biol. 181, 211–230 (1985)] of transcription and find this assumption to be correct only for the simplest of promoters. We define a new regulatory constant that is a nonlinear combination of association and transcription initiation constants characterizing activation and repression for more complicated promoters. Our results can guide the synthesis of new promoters and lead to a deeper understanding of the constraints guiding the natural promoters evolution.


92C40 Biochemistry, molecular biology
37N25 Dynamical systems in biology
Full Text: DOI


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