• Rakesh K Mishra

      Articles written in Journal of Biosciences

    • Promoter search and strength of a promoter: two important means for regulation of gene expression inEscherichia coli

      Rakesh K Mishra Dipankar Chatterji

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      Search for a promoter element by RNA polymerase from the extremely large DNA base sequence is thought to be the slowest and rate-determining for the regulation of transcription process. Few direct experiments we described here which have tried to follow the mechanistic implications of this promoter search. However, once the promoter is located, transcription complex, constituting mainly the RNA polymerase molecule and few transcription factors has to unidirectionally clear the promoter and elongate the RNA chain through a series of steps which altogether define the initiation of transcription process. Thus, it appears that the promoter sequence acts as a trap for RNA polymerase associated with a large binding constant, although to clear the promoter and to elongate the transcript such energy barrier has to be overcome. Topological state of the DNA, particularly in the neighbourhood of the promoter plays an important role in the energetics of the whole process

    • Boundaries that demarcate structural and functional domains of chromatin

      Rakesh K Mishra Francois Karch

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      Understanding of how the eukaryotic genome is packaged into chromatin and what the functional consequences of this organization are has begun to emerge recently. The concept of ‘chromatin domains’ — the topologically independent structural unit — is the basis of higher order chromatin organization. The idea that this structural unit may also coincide with the functional unit, offers a useful framework in dissecting the structure-function relationship. Boundaries that define these domains have been identified and several assays have been developed to test themin vivo. We have used genetic means to identify and analyse such boundary elements in the bithorax complex ofDrosophila melanogaster. In this review we discuss chromatin domain boundaries identified in several systems using different means. Although there is no significant sequence conservation among various chromatin domain boundaries, these elements show functional conservation across the species. Finally, we discuss mechanistic aspects of how chromatin domain boundaries may function in organizing and regulating eukaryotic genome.

    • Edward B Lewis (1918–2004)

      Rakesh K Mishra

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    • Commentary: Tone up your chromatin and stay young

      Navneet K Matharu Rakesh K Mishra

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    • Dynamics of nuclear matrix proteome during embryonic development in Drosophila melanogaster

      Parul Varma Rakesh K Mishra

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      Embryonic development is a complex and dynamic process that involves spatiotemporal expression of genes in a highly coordinated manner. Multiple levels of nuclear architecture maintain the fidelity of gene expression programme. One of the components of nuclear architecture, which is believed to play an important role in regulation of gene expression, is the nuclear matrix (NuMat). Many studies over the past few years have tried to analyse the components of this non-chromatin scaffolding of the nucleus and have provided evidences of its structural and functional complexity. However, the relationship of NuMat with the process of embryonic development still remains poorly understood. Here, we report a comparative analysis of the NuMat proteomes of early and late stage Drosophila melanogaster embryos and show that 65% of the NuMat proteome is dynamic during development. Our study establishes links between the dynamics of nuclear architecture and embryonic development and provides tools to further understand the process such as cellular differentiation in the context of higher-order nuclear organization.

    • Clipboard: Restraining the enhancers from straying

      Rakesh K Mishra

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    • Finding clues to the riddle of sex determination in zebrafish

      A Nagabhushana Rakesh K Mishra

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      How sex is determined has been one of the most intriguing puzzles in biology since antiquity. Although a fundamental process in most metazoans, there seems to be myriad of ways in which sex can be determined – from genetic to environmental sex determination. This variation is limited mainly to upstream triggers with the core of sex determination pathway being conserved. Zebrafish has gained prominence as a vertebrate model system to study development and disease. However, very little is known about its primary sex determination mechanism. Here we review our current understanding of the sex determination in zebrafish. Zebrafish lack identifiable heteromorphic sex chromosomes and sex is determined by multiple genes, with some influence from the environment. Recently, chromosome 4 has been identified as sex chromosome along with few sex-linked loci on chromosomes 5 and 16. The identities of candidate sex-linked genes, however, have remained elusive. Sex in zebrafish is also influenced by the number of meiotic oocytes in the juvenile ovary, which appear to instruct retention of the ovarian fate. The mechanism and identity of this instructive signal remain unknown. We hypothesize that sex in zebrafish is a culmination of combinatorial effects of the genome, germ cells and the environment with inputs from epigenetic factors translating the biological meaning of this interaction.

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