Analysis of Oligonucleotide AUG Start Codon Context in Eukariotic mRNAs

Graziano Pesole
Dipartimento di Fisiologia e Biochimica Generali
via Celoria, 26
20133 Milan, ITALY
telephone: +39-02-70644803
fax: +39-02-70632811
prestype: Platform
presenter: Graziano Pesole

Graziano Pesole1*, Carmela Gissi1, Giorgio Grillo2, Flavio Licciulli2, Sabino Liuni3 and Cecilia Saccone3,4

1Dipartimento di Fisiologia e Biochimica Generali, Università di Milano, Milan, Italy
2Area di Ricerca del CNR, Bari, Italy
3Centro di Studio sui Mitocondri e Metabolismo Energetico del CNR, Bari, Italy
4Dipartimento di Biochimica e Biologia Molecolare, Università di Bari, Italy

The AUG start codon context features have been investigated by analyzing eukaryotic mRNAs belonging to various taxonomic groups. The functional relevance of each specific position surrounding the AUG start codon has been established as a function of the measured shift between base composition observed at that particular position, and base composition averaged over all the 5’untranslated regions. A more detailed analysis carried out on human genes belonging to different isochores showed significant isochore-specific features that cannot be explained only by a mutational bias effect.

The most represented heptamers spanning from position ­3 to +4 with respect to the initiator AUG have been determined for mRNAs belonging to different taxonomic groups and a web page utility has been set up ( to determine the relative abundance of a user submitted oligonucleotide context in a given species or taxon.

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