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Biochem J. Mar 1, 1996; 314(Pt 2): 547–554.
PMCID: PMC1217084

Induction of the mammalian stress response gene GADD153 by oxidative stress: role of AP-1 element.

Abstract

GADD153 is a CCAAT/enhancer-binding-protein-related gene that may function to control cellular growth in response to stress signals. In this study, a variety of oxidant treatments were shown to stimulate endogenous GADD153 mRNA expression and to transcriptionally activate a GADD153 promoter-reporter gene construct in transfected HeLa cells. Both commonalities and distinctions in the induction of GADD153 by H2O2 and the thiol-reactive compound arsenite were demonstrated. GADD153 mRNA induction by both H2O2 and arsenite was potentiated by GSH depletion, and completely inhibited by N-acetyl-cysteine. o-Phenanthroline and mannitol blocked GADD153 induction by H2O2, indicating that iron-generated hydroxyl radical mediates this induction. Concordantly, GSH peroxidase overexpression in WI38 cells attenuated GADD153 mRNA induction by H2O2. However, GADD153 induction by arsenite was only modestly reduced in the same cells, suggesting a lesser contribution of peroxides to gene activation by arsenite. We also demonstrated that oxidative stress participates in the induction of GADD153 by UVC (254 nm) irradiation. Finally, both promoter-deletion analysis and point mutation of the AP-1 site in an otherwise intact promoter support a significant role for AP-1 in transcriptional activation of GADD153 by UVC or oxidant treatment. Indeed, exposure of cells to oxidants or UVC stimulated binding of Fos and Jun to the GADD153 AP-1 element. Together, these results demonstrate that both free-radical generation and thiol modification can transcriptionally activate GADD153, and that AP-1 is critical to oxidative regulation of this gene. This study further supports a role for the GADD153 gene product in the cellular response to oxidant injury.

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