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J Biol Chem. 2003 Jan 17;278(3):1533-41. Epub 2002 Nov 6.

Characterization of the c-Myb-responsive region and regulation of the human type I collagen alpha 2 chain gene by c-Myb.

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  • 1Laboratorio di Medicina Molecolare, Istituto di Clinica Medica, Ematologia ed Immunologia Clinica, UniversitĂ  di Ancona, 60020 Ancona, Italy.


We have characterized the role of c-Myb and B-Myb in the regulation of human type I collagen alpha2 chain gene expression in fibroblastic cells. We have identified four Myb-binding sites (MBSs) in the promoter. Transactivation assays on wild type and mutant promoter-reporter constructs demonstrated that c-Myb, but not B-Myb, can transactivate the human type I collagen alpha 2 chain gene promoter via the MBS-containing region. Electrophoretic mobility shift assay experiments showed that c-Myb specifically binds to each of the four MBS; however, the mutagenesis of site MBS-4 completely inhibited transactivation by c-Myb, at least in the full-length promoter. In agreement with these results, c-myb(-/-) mouse embryo fibroblasts (MEFs) showed a selective lack of expression of type I collagen alpha 2 chain gene but maintained the expression of fibronectin and type III collagen. Furthermore, transforming growth factor-beta induced type I collagen alpha 2 chain gene expression in c-myb(-/-) MEFs, implying that the transforming growth factor-beta signaling pathway is maintained and that the absence of COL1A2 gene expression in c-myb(-/-) MEFs is a direct consequence of the lack of c-Myb. The demonstration of the importance of c-Myb in the regulation of the type I collagen alpha 2 chain gene suggests that uncontrolled expression of c-Myb could be an underlying mechanism in the pathogenesis of several fibrotic disorders.

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