A series of contiguous 30-bp deletions were introduced into the regions upstream of the p19 and p40 promoters of adeno-associated virus (AAV), and the effects of these deletions on induction of AAV transcription by the rep gene products was evaluated. A novel complementation system was devised for supplying wild-type Rep protein when mutations disrupted the trans activation activity of the Rep protein. Transcription from the p40 promoter was eliminated upon deletion of the TATA sequence located between -4 and -33 from the cap site. Deletions which removed sequences from -34 to -123 bp from the p40 mRNA start site substantially reduced Rep induction of p40 transcription. p19 transcription was also undetectable when the p19 TATA sequence between -4 and -33 was deleted. In contrast to the p40 region, two types of cis-active sequences were found associated with the p19 promoter. Sequences between -4 and -63 bp relative to the p19 cap site were essential for Rep induction only from the p19 promoter. Deletions between -94 and -153 bp relative to the p19 cap site reduced Rep induction of both the p19 and p40 promoters coordinately. These two noncontiguous regions were separated by a 30-bp sequence that was not essential for transcription control. Further deletion analysis delineated a second cis-active element, associated with the p5 promoter (AAV nucleotides 191 to 320), which was also necessary for coordinate Rep activation of both the p19 and p40 promoters. Finally, the dependence of p40 transcription on the Rep-responsive elements within the p5 and p19 regions could be overcome by the presence of the AAV terminal repeats, suggesting that the terminal repeats contained redundant Rep-responsive elements. These results implied an interdependence in cis between the three AAV promoters and suggested a novel mechanism for coordinate regulation of gene expression in response to the trans-activating Rep protein. Coordinate induction appeared to be the result of a simultaneous interaction between the Rep protein and sequence elements associated with two or all three of the AAV promoters.
Ref to J Virol. 1991 Jun; 65(6): 2936–2945.