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

The early growth response protein (EGR-1) regulates interleukin-2 transcription by synergistic interaction with the nuclear factor of activated T cells.

The early growth response-1 gene (EGR-1) is induced by a wide range of stimuli in diverse cell types; however, EGR-1-regulated genes display a highly restricted pattern of expression. Recently, an overlapping Sp1.EGR-1 binding site has been identified within the interleukin-2 (IL-2) gene promoter directly upstream of the binding site for the nuclear factor of activated T cells (NFAT). We used transfection assays to study how the abundantly and constitutively expressed Sp1 protein and the immediate early EGR-1 zinc finger protein regulate IL-2 gene expression. Here, we identify EGR-1 as an important activator of the IL-2 gene. In Jurkat T cells, EGR-1 but not Sp1 acts as a potent coactivator for IL-2 transcription, and in combination with NFATc, EGR-1 increases transcription of an IL-2 reporter construct 200-fold. Electrophoretic mobility shift assays reveal that recombinant EGR-1 and NFATc bind independently to their target sites within the IL-2 promoter, and the presence of both sites on the same DNA molecule is required for EGR-1.NFATc.DNA complex formation. The transcriptional synergy observed here for EGR-1 and NFATc explains how the abundant nuclear factor EGR-1 contributes to the expression of restrictively expressed genes.[1]


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