cis-acting sequences involved in exon selection in the chicken beta-tropomyosin gene.Mol Cell Biol. 1992 Dec; 12(12):5415-25.MC
The chicken beta-tropomyosin gene contains an internal pair of mutually exclusive exons (6A and 6B) that are selected in a tissue-specific manner. Exon 6A is incorporated in fibroblasts and smooth muscle cells, whereas exon 6B is skeletal muscle specific. In this study we show that two different regions in the intron between the two mutually exclusive exons are important for this specific selection in nonmuscle cells. Sequences in the 3' end of the intron have a negative effect in the recognition of the 3' splice site, while sequences in the 5' end of the intron have a positive effect in the recognition of the 5' splice site. First, sequences in exon 6B as well as in the intron upstream of exon 6B are both able to inhibit splicing when placed in a heterologous gene. The sequences in the polypyrimidine stretch region contribute to splicing inhibition of exons 5 or 6A to 6B through a mechanism independent of their implication in the previously described secondary structure around exon 6B. Second, we have identified a sequence of 30 nucleotides in the intron just downstream of exon 6A that is essential for the recognition of the 5' splice site of exon 6A. This is so even after introduction of a consensus sequence into the 5' splice site of this exon. Deletion of this sequence blocks splicing of exon 6A to 6B after formation of the presplicing complex. Taken together, these results suggest that both the mutually exclusive behavior and the choice between exons 6A and 6B of the chicken beta-tropomyosin gene are trans regulated.