Abstract

A systematic analysis of the RNA splice junction sequences of eukaryotic protein coding genes was carried out using the GENBANK databank. Nucleotide frequencies obtained for the highly conserved regions around the splice sites for different categories of organisms closely agree with each other. A striking similarity among the rare splice junctions which do not contain AG at the 3′ splice site or GT at the 5′ splice site indicates the existence of special mechanisms to recognize them, and that these unique signals may be involved in crucial gene-regulation events and in differentiation. A method was developed to predict potential exons in a bare sequence, using a scoring and ranking scheme based on nucleotide weight tables. This method was used to find a majority of the exons in selected known genes, and also predicted potential new exons which may be used in alternative splicing situations.

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