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

The retinoblastoma protein binds the promoter of the survival gene bcl-2 and regulates its transcription in epithelial cells through transcription factor AP-2.

The retinoblastoma (RB) gene product has been shown to restrict cell proliferation, promote cell differentiation, and inhibit apoptosis. Loss of RB function can induce both p53-dependent apoptosis and p53-independent apoptosis; little is known about the mechanisms of RB- regulated p53-independent apoptosis. Here we show that RB specifically activates transcription of the survival gene bcl-2 in epithelial cells but not in NIH 3T3 mesenchymal cells. This transcriptional activity is mediated by the transcription factor AP-2. By monitoring protein-DNA interactions in living cells using formaldehyde cross-linking and chromatin immunoprecipitation, we show that endogenous RB and AP-2 both bind to the same bcl-2 promoter sequence. In addition, we demonstrate that RB and AP-2 also bind to the E-cadherin gene promoter in vivo, consistent with regulation of this promoter by both AP-2 and RB in epithelial cells. This study provides evidence that RB activates bcl-2 and E-cadherin by binding directly to the respective promoter sequences and not indirectly by repressing an inhibitor. This recruitment is mediated by a transcription factor, in this case AP-2. For the first time, our results suggest a direct molecular mechanism by which RB might inhibit apoptosis independently of p53. The results are discussed in a context where RB and Bcl-2 contribute under nonpathological conditions to the maintenance of cell viability in association with a differentiated phenotype, contributing to the tumor suppressor function of RB and playing important roles in normal development.[1]

References

  1. The retinoblastoma protein binds the promoter of the survival gene bcl-2 and regulates its transcription in epithelial cells through transcription factor AP-2. Decary, S., Decesse, J.T., Ogryzko, V., Reed, J.C., Naguibneva, I., Harel-Bellan, A., Cremisi, C.E. Mol. Cell. Biol. (2002) [Pubmed]
 
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