Contributions of low molecule number and chromosomal positioning to stochastic gene expression

Nat Genet. 2005 Sep;37(9):937-44. doi: 10.1038/ng1616. Epub 2005 Aug 7.


The presence of low-copy-number regulators and switch-like signal propagation in regulatory networks are expected to increase noise in cellular processes. We developed a noise amplifier that detects fluctuations in the level of low-abundance mRNAs in yeast. The observed fluctuations are not due to the low number of molecules expressed from a gene per se but originate in the random, rare events of gene activation. The frequency of these events and the correlation between stochastic expressions of genes in a single cell depend on the positioning of the genes along the chromosomes. Transcriptional regulators produced by such random expression propagate noise to their target genes.

Publication types

  • Research Support, N.I.H., Extramural
  • Research Support, U.S. Gov't, Non-P.H.S.
  • Research Support, U.S. Gov't, P.H.S.

MeSH terms

  • Chromosomes, Fungal*
  • DNA Replication
  • Gene Dosage
  • Gene Expression Regulation, Fungal*
  • Kinetics
  • Models, Genetic*
  • Plasmids / genetics
  • Plasmids / metabolism
  • Promoter Regions, Genetic*
  • Saccharomyces cerevisiae / genetics*
  • Saccharomyces cerevisiae Proteins / genetics*
  • Statistical Distributions
  • Stochastic Processes*
  • Transcription, Genetic
  • Transcriptional Activation


  • Saccharomyces cerevisiae Proteins