Send to

Choose Destination
See comment in PubMed Commons below
Mol Cell Biol. 2008 Aug;28(16):4999-5013. doi: 10.1128/MCB.00695-08. Epub 2008 Jun 16.

L-Sox5 and Sox6 drive expression of the aggrecan gene in cartilage by securing binding of Sox9 to a far-upstream enhancer.

Author information

  • 1Department of Cell Biology and Orthopaedic Research Center, Cleveland Clinic, Cleveland, OH 44195, USA.


The Sry-related high-mobility-group box transcription factor Sox9 recruits the redundant L-Sox5 and Sox6 proteins to effect chondrogenesis, but the mode of action of the trio remains unclear. We identify here a highly conserved 359-bp sequence 10 kb upstream of the Agc1 gene for aggrecan, a most essential cartilage proteoglycan and key marker of chondrocyte differentiation. This sequence directs expression of a minimal promoter in both embryonic and adult cartilage in transgenic mice, in a manner that matches Agc1 expression. The chondrogenic trio is required and sufficient to mediate the activity of this enhancer. It acts directly, Sox9 binding to a critical cis-acting element and L-Sox5/Sox6 binding to three additional elements, which are cooperatively needed. Upon binding to their specific sites, L-Sox5/Sox6 increases the efficiency of Sox9 binding to its own recognition site and thereby robustly potentiates the ability of Sox9 to activate the enhancer. L-Sox5/Sox6 similarly secures Sox9 binding to Col2a1 (encoding collagen-2) and other cartilage-specific enhancers. This study thus uncovers critical cis-acting elements and transcription factors driving Agc1 expression in cartilage and increases understanding of the mode of action of the chondrogenic Sox trio.

[PubMed - indexed for MEDLINE]
Free PMC Article
PubMed Commons home

PubMed Commons

How to join PubMed Commons

    Supplemental Content

    Full text links

    Icon for HighWire Icon for PubMed Central
    Loading ...
    Write to the Help Desk