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

Pax-5 (BSAP) recruits Ets proto-oncogene family proteins to form functional ternary complexes on a B-cell-specific promoter.

The paired box transcription factor Pax-5 (B-cell-specific activator protein) is a key regulator of lineage-specific gene expression and differentiation in B-lymphocytes. We show that Pax-5 functions as a cell type-specific docking protein that facilitates binding of the early B-cell-specific mb-1 promoter by proteins of the Ets proto-oncogene family. Transcriptional activity of the mb-1 promoter in pre-B-cells is critically dependent on binding sites for Pax-5:Ets complexes. Ternary complex assembly requires only the Pax-5 paired box and ETS DNA-binding domains. Mutation of a single base pair in the ternary complex binding site allows for independent binding by Ets proteins but, conversely, inhibits the binding of Pax-5 by itself. Strikingly, the mutation reverses the pattern of complex assembly: Ets proteins recruit Pax-5 to bind the mutated sequence. Recruitment of Net and Elk-1, but not SAP1a, by Pax-5 defines a functional difference between closely related Ets proteins. Replacement of a valine (V68) in the ETS domain of SAP1a by aspartic acid (as found in c-Ets-1, Elk-1, and Net) enhanced ternary complex formation by more than 60-fold. Together, these observations define novel transcription factor interactions that regulate gene expression in B cells.[1]


  1. Pax-5 (BSAP) recruits Ets proto-oncogene family proteins to form functional ternary complexes on a B-cell-specific promoter. Fitzsimmons, D., Hodsdon, W., Wheat, W., Maira, S.M., Wasylyk, B., Hagman, J. Genes Dev. (1996) [Pubmed]
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