Inducible Operon

∞ generated and posted on 2016.12.04 ∞

Gene expression that is upregulated transcriptionally when insufficient amounts of the products of metabolic pathways, encoded by the gene or genes in question, are present.

Operons are clusters of genes and Inducible Operons are operons that must be 'turned on' before their transcription can commence.

Inducible operons are an example of negative control of gene expression. Their default state is "off", meaning that binding of the active regulator protein to DNA, thereby blocking transcription initiation, is the default state. See in particular the Lac operon.

Inducible operons tend to encode catabolic pathways, that is, where specific energy sources are broken down towards ATP production. The point is that transcription of underlying structural genes is blocked until the expression of those genes is needed by the cell.

See by contrast corepressed operon and positive control of gene expression.