Undergraduate Honors Theses

Thesis Defended

Spring 2011

Document Type



Chemistry & Biochemistry

First Advisor

Dylan Taatjes, PhD


Regulation of gene expression is an essential process in all organisms. Research within the last decade has elucidated the central importance of the Mediator complex in the fundamentals of gene expression. Mediator has been shown to adopt various structural changes when bound to different transcriptional activators. As a part of the NF-κB family of proteins, p65 (RelA) is a diverse transcriptional activator highly involved in inflammation and immune response as well as other essential signaling pathways. Mediator and p65 have been shown to interact through the activation domain of p65. To further explore this interaction, the p65-Mediator complex was purified in vitro and analyzed by mass spectrometry to identify cofactors of the complex. Evidence is provided for the identification of both novel and previously described interactions.