In order to understand the process of transcription termination by eukaryotic RNA polymerase II, the transcription termination region of the advenovirus 2 major late transcription unit was analysed in a transient transfection system. Previously, it had been demonstrated that the entire sequence from map units (m.u.) 97.1 to 100 of the adenovirus 2 genome terminates transcription when inserted into the 5′ or 3′ untranslated sequences of the chloramphenicol acetyltransferase gene. Using subclones and Bal 31 deletion mutants of the termination region, we have shown that the termination region consists of multiple elements each capable of inhibiting gene expression independently. A DNA sequence analysis reveals the presence of a highly repetitive A-rich sequence motif throughout the entire termination region. The data suggest that the A-rich motif may mediate the transcription termination process.


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