Résumé : In Trypanosoma brucei only two promoters for protein-encoding genes have been characterized so far. The RIME and Ingi elements of T. brucei are similar in structure to the non-long terminal repeat retrotransposons. Internal promoters usually located at their 5' end drive transcription of several of the latter elements. During a search for promoter activity within RIME and Ingi we focused on a region at the 5' end of both elements, which we termed rime5. A 50 kDa nuclear protein was found to specifically bind to the double strand and single strand sense of rime5 DNA. However, constructs containing several rime5 fragments inserted upstream of a chloramphenicol acetyltransferase (CAT) reporter gene failed to promote both transcription and expression of this gene in transient transfection assays. Finally, we have analyzed the expression of the Ingi elements and despite the high level of transcripts detectable in the cytoplasm, antibodies raised against two different domains of the single open reading frame did not detect any component in total extracts from T. brucei, suggesting that few Ingi copies, if any, are actually active.