HMG domain proteins: architectural elements in the assembly of nucleoprotein structures

Trends Genet. 1994 Mar;10(3):94-100. doi: 10.1016/0168-9525(94)90232-1.


The high-mobility group (HMG) domain is a DNA-binding motif that is shared abundant non-histone components of chromatin and by specific regulators of transcription and cell differentiation. The HMG family of proteins comprises members with multiple HMG domains that bind DNA with low sequence specificity, and members with single HMG domains that recognize specific nucleotide sequences. Common properties of HMG domain proteins include interaction with the minor groove of the DNA helix, binding to irregular DNA structures, and the capacity to modulate DNA structure by bending. DNA bending induced by the HMG domain can facilitate the formation of higher-order nucleoprotein complexes, suggesting that HMG domain proteins may have an architectural role in assembling such complexes.

Publication types

  • Review

MeSH terms

  • Amino Acid Sequence
  • Base Sequence
  • DNA-Binding Proteins / chemistry
  • DNA-Binding Proteins / genetics
  • High Mobility Group Proteins / chemistry*
  • High Mobility Group Proteins / genetics*
  • Models, Molecular
  • Molecular Sequence Data
  • Nucleic Acid Conformation
  • Nucleoproteins / chemistry*
  • Nucleoproteins / genetics
  • Sequence Alignment


  • DNA-Binding Proteins
  • High Mobility Group Proteins
  • Nucleoproteins