Research Article
The Med1 Subunit of Transcriptional Mediator Plays a Central Role in Regulating CCAAT/Enhancer-binding Protein-β-driven Transcription in Response to Interferon-γ

Hui Li, Padmaja Gade, Shreeram C. Nallar, Abhijit Raha, Sanjit K. Roy, Sreenivasu Karra, Janardan K. Reddy, Sekhar P. Reddy and Dhananjaya V. Kalvakolanu

The Journal of Biological Chemistry, 2008, 283(19), 13077-13086. DOI: 10.1074/jbc.M800604200

Abstract

Transcription factor CCAAT/enhancer-binding protein (C/EBP)-β is crucial for regulating transcription of genes involved in a number of diverse cellular processes, including those involved in some cytokine-induced responses. However, the mechanisms that contribute to its diverse transcriptional activity are not yet fully understood. To gain an understanding into its mechanisms of action, we took a proteomic approach and identified cellular proteins that associate with C/EBP-β in an interferon (IFN)-γ-dependent manner. Transcriptional mediator (Mediator) is a multisubunit protein complex that regulates signal-induced cellular gene transcription from enhancer-bound transcription factor(s). Here, we report that the Med1 subunit of the Mediator as a C/EBP-β-interacting protein. Using gene knock-out cells and mutational and RNA interference approaches, we show that Med1 is critical for IFN-induced expression of certain genes. Med1 associates with C/EBP-β through a domain located between amino acids 125 and 155 of its N terminus. We also show that the MAPK, ERK1/2, and an ERK phosphorylation site within regulatory domain 2, more specifically the Thr189 residue, of C/EBP-β are essential for it to bind to Med1. Last, an ERK-regulated site in Med1 protein is also essential for up-regulating IFN-induced transcription although not critical for binding to C/EBP-β.

ASCI-ID: 188-1160

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