Diffusion of nucleoside triphosphates and role of the entry site to the RNA polymerase II active center

Nizar N. Batada, Kenneth D. Westover, David A. Bushnell, Michael Levitt, Roger D. Kornberg

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Nucleoside triphosphates (NTPs) diffuse to the active center of RNA polymerase II through a funnel-shaped opening that narrows to a negatively charged pore. Computer simulation shows that the funnel and pore reduce the rate of diffusion by a factor of ≈2 × 10-7. The resulting limitation on the rate of RNA synthesis under conditions of low NTP concentration may be overcome by NTP binding to an entry site adjacent to the active center. Binding to the entry site greatly enhances the lifetime of an NTP in the active center region, and it prevents "backtracking" and the consequent occlusion of the active site.

Original languageEnglish (US)
Pages (from-to)17361-17364
Number of pages4
JournalProceedings of the National Academy of Sciences of the United States of America
Issue number50
StatePublished - Dec 14 2004



  • Computation
  • Electrostatics
  • Transcription

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • General

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