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Long interspersed nuclear elements (LINEs) are ubiquitous transposable elements in higher eukaryotes that have a significant role in shaping genomes, owing to their abundance. Here we report that guanine-rich sequences in the 3' untranslated regions (UTRs) of hominoid-specific LINE-1 elements are coupled with retrotransposon speciation and contribute to retrotransposition through the formation of G-quadruplex (G4) structures. We demonstrate that stabilization of the G4 motif of a human-specific LINE-1 element by small-molecule ligands stimulates retrotransposition.

Original publication

DOI

10.1038/nsmb.3367

Type

Journal article

Journal

Nat Struct Mol Biol

Publication Date

03/2017

Volume

24

Pages

243 - 247

Keywords

3' Untranslated Regions, Base Sequence, G-Quadruplexes, HeLa Cells, Humans, Ligands, Long Interspersed Nucleotide Elements, Mutation, Nucleotide Motifs, Retroelements