Silencing is golden: negative regulation in the control of neuronal gene transcription. Academic Article uri icon


  • Recent work has identified negative-acting DNA regulatory elements that function to prevent the expression of neuronal genes in non-neuronal cell types or in inappropriate neuronal subtypes. In some cases, the protein factors that interact with these silencer elements have been isolated and characterized. For example, the recently cloned silencer-binding factor NRSF/REST is a novel zinc-finger protein that interacts with silencer elements in a number of neuron-specific genes. These data suggest that negative regulation plays a major role in determining the diverse patterns of gene expression within the nervous system.

publication date

  • October 1995