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Biochem J. 2008 Dec 15;416(3):407-19. doi: 10.1042/BJ20081085.

PGC-1alpha induces dynamic protein interactions on the ERRalpha gene multi-hormone response element nucleosome in kidney cells.

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  • 1Gene Regulation Section, Laboratory of Reproductive and Developmental Toxicology, National Institute of Environmental Health Sciences, National Institutes of Health, Research Triangle Park, NC 27709, USA.


ERR (oestrogen-related receptor)-alpha modulates the oestrogen signalling pathway and regulates genes participating in the physiological energy balance programme. Oestrogen and PGC-1alpha (peroxisome proliferator-activated receptor-gamma coactivator-1alpha), the master regulator of the energy homoeostasis programme, both regulate the expression of ERRalpha through the MHRE (multi-hormone response element) of the ERRalpha gene. Although the molecular mechanism of oestrogen action on ERRalpha regulation is well characterized, the mechanism of PGC-1alpha induction is unclear. In this study, we examine chromatin structural changes and protein interactions at the MHRE nucleosome in response to PGC-1alpha expression in HK2 human kidney cells. We mapped the nucleosome positions of the ERRalpha gene promoter and examined the changes of histone acetylation in response to PGC-1alpha expression. The interactions of DNA-binding proteins, ERRalpha and ERRgamma, co-activators {CBP [CREB (cAMP-response-element-binding protein)-binding protein], p300, PCAF (p300/CBP-associated factor)}, co-repressor [RIP140 (receptor-interacting protein of 140 kDa)] and RNA polymerase II at the MHRE nucleosome region were investigated over time before and after PGC-1alpha expression in the HK2 cells. We found a dynamic cyclic interaction of these proteins shortly after PGC-1alpha expression and a slower cycling interaction, with fewer proteins involved, 20 h later. By using the siRNA (small interfering RNA) knockdown approach, we discovered that ERRgamma was involved in the initial phase, but not in the later phase, of PGC-1alpha-induced ERRalpha expression.

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