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Mol Cell Biol. 1993 Jan; 13(1): 561–570.
PMCID: PMC358935

Transcriptional activation by the adenovirus larger E1a product is mediated by members of the cellular transcription factor ATF family which can directly associate with E1a.


We recently isolated three cDNA clones encoding closely related proteins (ATFa1, ATFa2, and ATFa3) that belong to the activating transcription factor-cyclic AMP-responsive element family of cellular transcription factors. Using cotransfection experiments, we showed that these proteins mediate the transcriptional activation induced by the adenovirus E1a 13S mRNA gene product and that the zinc-binding domains present in both E1a conserved region 3 and the most N-terminal portion of the ATFa proteins play crucial roles in this activity. Reciprocal coimmunoprecipitation experiments demonstrated direct interactions between these proteins. Neither the conserved region 3 domain of E1a nor the N-terminal metal-binding element of ATFa is essential for these interactions. The simultaneous alteration of both the N-terminal and the C-terminal domains of ATFa abolished E1a binding, while either mutation alone failed to impair these interactions.

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