Team:SUSTC-Shenzhen-B/future plan


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The transcription stage, the reading of genetic information from DNA, is composed of promoter binding and the activation of RNA polymerase, RNA transcript initiation and promoter escape, RNA transcript elongation, and transcript termination, and release.

What is terminator?

Terminators are genetic parts that usually occur at the end of a gene or operon and cause transcription to stop. In prokaryotes, terminators usually fall into two categories (1) rho-independent terminators and (2) rho-dependent terminators.

Rho-independent terminators are generally composed of palindromic sequence that forms a stem loop rich in G-C base pairs followed by several T bases. The conventional model of transcriptional termination is that the stem loop causes RNA polymerase to pause and transcription of the poly-A tail causes the RNA:DNA duplex to unwind and dissociate from RNA polymerase.

Terminator Efficiency:

Although terminators are positioned at the ends of genes, they also play irreplaceable roles. It is important that transcription is imperfectly terminated at some terminator so that the ratio of the amount of the mRNA transcribed from upstream and that from downstream of the terminator is controlled. This regulation is qualified by the termination efficiency.

Brief idea to calculate efficiency:

The fluorescence produced by the characterization devices are then measured using flow cytometry to calculate the termination efficiency of the terminators.


E: Terminator efficiency

S: The number of cells that have been terminated successfully

F: Number of cells that haven’t been terminated successfully.

For more information about how to calculate the terminator efficiency, please see algorithm.


The process of transcription

the secondary structure of terminator