Chapter 7

Reporter, Inducible And Synthetic Promoters: Engineering Tools To Study Gene Regulation And Biological Systems

Nicolas Jonckheere and Isabelle Van Seuningen

Abstract

Promoters, regions of DNA located upstream of genes, are the first line of control of gene expression. Cloning wild type promoter constructs upstream of reporter genes allow researchers to use them as reporters for in vitro and in vivo studies of transcriptional regulation and gene expression. Synthetic promoters are also designed in order to gain control of spatial (tissue-specific expression) and/or temporal (chemically or environmentally inducible) expression of a gene of interest. Elaboration of genetically controlled systems also leads to more complex tightly dynamic networks of synthetic promoters. In the present review, we highlight the potential applications of reporter, inducible and synthetic promoters as tools to study gene transcription and elaborate in vitro and in vivo biological systems with an outstanding impact on gene transfer and gene therapy. In the future, engineered promoters will provide the basis for highly sophisticated genetic manipulations in biological processing, biopharmaceutical applications, gene therapy and tissue engineering applications for in vivo models.

Total Pages: 149-161 (13)

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