RNA Polymerase

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RNA Polymerases are enzymes involved in the production of RNA. After the annealing of a primer, RNA polymerases build a complementary strand of RNA from free nucleotides using a strand of DNA as a template. The active form is a complex consisting of multiple subunits known as the RNA polymerase holoenzyme (Molecular mass ~400 kilodaltons) [1].

In Eukaryotes some RNA polymerases include:

All three of the above RNA Polymerases' have a conserved core. This means that, in the case of RNA Polymerase II and III transcription can be initiated by the promoter sequence (varying TATA - box sequences) of the other RNA Polymerase. This leads to a varying level of polymerase specificity, depending on the other promoter sequence and transcription conditions.[2]


  1. Hartl. D, Jones. E (2009), Genetics - Analysis Of Genes And Genomes, 7th Edition, Sudbury: Jones and Bartlett Publishers p346
  2. http://www.jbc.org/content/289/29/20396.abstract RNA Polymerase III Accurately Initiates Transcription from RNA Polymerase II Promoters in Vitro. Author: Sascha H. C. Duttke

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