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Hoffmann, R. A wiki for the life sciences where authorship matters. Nature Genetics (2008)

A novel secreted form of immune suppressor factor with high homology to vacuolar ATPases identified by a forward genetic approach of functional screening based on cell proliferation.

In the search for stromal-derived growth factors, we have identified a novel secreted short form of immune suppressor factor (ISF) using a combination of a genetic approach and retrovirus-mediated functional screening. This protein, which we termed ShIF, was isolated based on its ability to support proliferation of a mutant clone S21, which was established from Ba/F3 cells that are usually interleukin-3-dependent but became dependent on a stroma cell line ST2 after chemical mutagenesis. ISF, a membrane protein harboring six transmembrane domains, was reported to have immunosuppressive functions. The coding region of ShIF started from the third transmembrane domain of ISF. Biochemical analysis demonstrated that ShIF was expressed in both the secreted and membrane-bound forms of 27-kDa protein, which was supposed to have an internal ATG present in the third transmembrane domain of ISF as a start codon. In addition to the full-length form of ISF, a major protein with a molecular size of 27 kDa was also expressed through the proteolytic process of ISF. ShIF resembles this naturally occurring short form of ISF (sISF). Deletion analysis of the major domains of ISF cDNA revealed that ShIF is an active functional domain of ISF with a capability to support proliferation of S21 cells. Enforced expression of ShIF in MS10 cells, bone marrow stroma cells that do not express endogenous ShIF or ISF, conferred on the cells an ability to support the growth of S21 cells as well as bone marrow cells. Interestingly, ShIF shows a high sequence homology to the C-terminal part of a 95-kDa yeast vacuolar H (+)-ATPase subunit, Vph1p (39%), and a 116-kDa proton pump (VPP1) (54%) of the rat and bovine synaptic vesicle. Therefore, it is possible that ShIF also acts as a proton pump and somehow prevents the cells from undergoing apoptosis.[1]


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