Figure 4B(4). Impact of transposable elements (TEs) on eukaryotic genome architecture and gene expression. TEs (shown as black vertical lines in a chromosome) can be involved in formation and maintenance of important chromosomal structures, such as centromere and telomere. TEs induce heterochromatin formation in chromosomes. TEs (shown as black boxes) can also influence local gene expression in various ways. At the transcriptional level, a TE insertion can introduce promoter sequences and cis-regulatory element(s) to a nearby gene. Outward-reading transcription from a TE downstream of a gene can generate an antisense RNA that potentially interfere with sense transcription. In addition, TEs can induce epigenetic gene silencing by chromatin remodeling that potentially represses the transcription of adjacent gene(s). At the posttranscriptional level, a TE that has inserted in the 3UTR of a gene can introduce a target of miRNA that interferes translation. Finally, TEs or TE-derived sequences can produce noncoding RNAs (ncRNAs) that operate as a cis- or trans-gene regulator. (Nakayashiki 2011) Reproduced with permission from John Wiley and Sons.



Nakayashiki, H. (2011). "The Trickster in the genome: contribution and control of transposable elements." Genes Cells 16(8): 827-841.