Background: All known genomes code for a large number of transcription factors. It is important to develop methods that will reveal how these transcription factors act on a genome wide level, that is, through what target genes they exert their function. Results: We describe here a program pipeline aimed at identifying transcription factor target genes in whole genomes. Starting from a consensus binding site, represented as a weight matrix, potential sites in a pre-filtered genome are identified and then further filtered by assessing conservation of the putative site in the genome of a related species, a process called phylogenetic footprinting. CisOrtho has been successfully used to identify targets for two homeodomain transcription factors in the genomes of the nematodes Caenorhabditis elegans and Caenorhabditis briggsae. Conclusions: CisOrtho will identify targets of other nematode transcription factors whose DNA binding specificity is known and can be easily adapted to search other genomes for transcription factor targets.
ASJC Scopus subject areas
- Structural Biology
- Molecular Biology
- Computer Science Applications
- Applied Mathematics