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Immunity. 2000 Mar;12(3):293-300.

Sequential involvement of NFAT and Egr transcription factors in FasL regulation.

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  • 1Department of Immunology and Infectious Diseases, Harvard School of Public Health, Boston, Massachusetts 02115, USA.


The critical function of NFAT proteins in maintaining lymphoid homeostasis was revealed in mice lacking both NFATp and NFAT4 (DKO). DKO mice exhibit increased lymphoproliferation, decreased activation-induced cell death, and impaired induction of FasL. The transcription factors Egr2 and Egr3 are potent activators of FasL expression. Here we find that Egr2 and Egr3 are NFAT target genes. Activation of FasL occurs via the NFAT-dependent induction of Egr3, as demonstrated by the ability of exogenously provided NFATp to restore Egr-dependent FasL promoter activity in DKO lymph node cells. Further, Egr3 expression is enriched in Th1 cells, suggesting a molecular basis for the known preferential expression of FasL in the Th1 versus Th2 subset.

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