UMMS Affiliation

Department of Biochemistry and Molecular Biology; Program in Molecular Medicine

Publication Date


Document Type



Binding Sites; Chromosomal Proteins, Non-Histone; DNA Footprinting; DNA, Fungal; DNA-Binding Proteins; Fungal Proteins; Galactose; Gene Expression Regulation, Fungal; Genes, Fungal; *Nuclear Proteins; Nucleosomes; Promoter Regions (Genetics); Saccharomyces cerevisiae; *Saccharomyces cerevisiae Proteins; Trans-Activation (Genetics); Trans-Activators; Transcription Factors


Life Sciences | Medicine and Health Sciences


The Saccharomyces cerevisiae SWI-SNF complex is a 2-MDa protein assembly that is required for the function of many transcriptional activators. Here we describe experiments on the role of the SWI-SNF complex in activation of transcription by the yeast activator GAL4. We find that while SWI-SNF activity is not required for the GAL4 activator to bind to and activate transcription from nucleosome-free binding sites, the complex is required for GAL4 to bind to and function at low-affinity, nucleosomal binding sites in vivo. This SWI-SNF dependence can be overcome by (i) replacing the low-affinity sites with higher-affinity, consensus GAL4 binding sequences or (ii) placing the low-affinity sites into a nucleosome-free region. These results define the criteria for the SWI-SNF dependence of gene expression and provide the first in vivo evidence that the SWI-SNF complex can regulate gene expression by modulating the DNA binding of an upstream activator protein.


Mol Cell Biol. 1997 Aug;17(8):4811-9.

Journal/Book/Conference Title

Molecular and cellular biology

Related Resources

Link to Article in PubMed

PubMed ID




To view the content in your browser, please download Adobe Reader or, alternately,
you may Download the file to your hard drive.

NOTE: The latest versions of Adobe Reader do not support viewing PDF files within Firefox on Mac OS and if you are using a modern (Intel) Mac, there is no official plugin for viewing PDF files within the browser window.