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Mol Cell Biol. Aug 1995; 15(8): 4518–4524.
PMCID: PMC230691

B-cell-specific DNA binding by an E47 homodimer.

Abstract

B cells express a unique E-box-binding activity that contains basic helix-loop-helix (bHLH) proteins encoded by the E2A gene. E2A proteins play a central role in immunoglobulin gene transcription and are also required for the generation of the B-lymphocyte lineage. In muscle, E2A proteins bind DNA as heterodimers with muscle-specific bHLH partners, such as MyoD and myogenin, and these heterodimers are thought to be both necessary and sufficient for muscle determination in cultured cells. Our results indicate that in B cells, the bHLH partners for E2A proteins are not B-cell-restricted proteins, but are the E2A proteins themselves. UV cross-linking, gel purification, and the analysis of "forced heterodimers" indicate that BCF1 is primarily a homodimer of the E2A protein E47. Since E47 is widely expressed, our results argue for a difference in the inherent DNA-binding properties of the E47 protein in B cells and may help explain the restricted B-lineage defect observed in E2A-deficient mice.

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Selected References

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