The Mediator complex and transcription elongation

Ronald C. Conaway, Joan Weliky Conaway

Research output: Contribution to journalReview articlepeer-review

106 Scopus citations


Background: Mediator is an evolutionarily conserved multisubunit RNA polymerase II (Pol II) coregulatory complex. Although Mediator was initially found to play a critical role in the regulation of the initiation of Pol II transcription, recent studies have brought to light an expanded role for Mediator at post-initiation stages of transcription. Scope of review: We provide a brief description of the structure of Mediator and its function in the regulation of Pol II transcription initiation, and we summarize recent findings implicating Mediator in the regulation of various stages of Pol II transcription elongation. Major conclusions: Emerging evidence is revealing new roles for Mediator in nearly all stages of Pol II transcription, including initiation, promoter escape, elongation, pre-mRNA processing, and termination. General significance: Mediator plays a central role in the regulation of gene expression by impacting nearly all stages of mRNA synthesis. This article is part of a Special Issue entitled: RNA polymerase II Transcript Elongation.

Original languageEnglish (US)
Pages (from-to)69-75
Number of pages7
JournalBiochimica et Biophysica Acta - Gene Regulatory Mechanisms
Issue number1
StatePublished - Jan 2013
Externally publishedYes


  • ELL
  • Elongation
  • Mediator
  • P-TEFb
  • RNA polymerase II
  • Transcription

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • Biophysics
  • Structural Biology
  • Biochemistry
  • Molecular Biology
  • Genetics


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