Regulatory regions in DNA: promoters, enhancers, silencers, and insulators.

Jean Jack M. Riethoven

Research output: Contribution to journalReview articlepeer-review

74 Scopus citations


One of the mechanisms through which protein levels in the cell are controlled is through transcriptional regulation. Certain regions, called cis-regulatory elements, on the DNA are footprints for the trans-acting proteins involved in transcription, either for the positioning of the basic transcriptional machinery or for the regulation - in simple terms turn on or turn off - thereof. The basic transcriptional machinery is DNA-dependent RNA polymerase (RNAP) which synthesizes various types of RNA and core promoters on the DNA are used to position the RNAP. Other nearby regions will regulate the transcription: in prokaryotic organisms operators are involved; in eukaryotic organisms, proximal promoter regions, enhancers, silencers, and insulators are present. This chapter will describe the various DNA regions involved in transcription and transcriptional regulation.

Original languageEnglish (US)
Pages (from-to)33-42
Number of pages10
JournalMethods in molecular biology (Clifton, N.J.)
StatePublished - 2010

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • Molecular Biology
  • Genetics


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