Assays for transcription factor activity

Douglas Browning, Nigel Savery, Annie Kolb, Stephen Busby

Research output: Chapter in Book/Published conference outputChapter (peer-reviewed)peer-review


Transcription factors interact at promoters to modulate the transcription of genes. This chapter describes three in vitro methods that can be used to monitor their activity: transcript assays, abortive initiation assays, and potassium permanganate footprinting. These techniques have been developed using bacterial systems, and can be used to study the kinetics of transcription initiation, and hence to unravel regulatory mechanisms.

Original languageEnglish
Title of host publicationDNA-Protein Interactions
EditorsB. Leblanc, T. Moss
PublisherHumana Press
Number of pages19
ISBN (Electronic)978-1-60327-015-1
ISBN (Print)978-1-60327-014-4
Publication statusPublished - Mar 2009

Publication series

NameMethods in molecular biology
PublisherHumana Press
ISSN (Print)1064-3745


  • Biological Assay/methods
  • Cyclic AMP Receptor Protein/metabolism
  • DNA Footprinting
  • DNA-Directed RNA Polymerases/metabolism
  • Escherichia coli/enzymology
  • Plasmids/genetics
  • Potassium Permanganate
  • Promoter Regions, Genetic/genetics
  • RNA, Messenger/genetics
  • Transcription Factors/metabolism
  • Transcription, Genetic
  • Transcriptional Activation/genetics


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