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Biochem Cell Biol. 2011 Feb;89(1):12-23. doi: 10.1139/O10-114.

WSTF does it all: a multifunctional protein in transcription, repair, and replication.

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  • 1Department of Biological Sciences, University of Alaska Anchorage, 3211 Providence Drive, Anchorage, AK 99508, USA.


Williams syndrome transcription factor (WSTF) has emerged as an incredibly versatile nuclear protein. WSTF and the ATP-dependent chromatin remodeling complexes in which it exists, WINAC, WICH, and B-WICH, have been studied in a variety of organisms. This research has revealed roles for WSTF in a number of diverse molecular events. WSTF function includes chromatin assembly, RNA polymerase I and III gene regulation, vitamin D metabolism, and DNA repair. In addition to functioning as a subunit of several ATP-dependent chromatin remodeling complexes, WSTF binds specifically to acetylated histones and is itself a histone kinase as well as a target of phosphorylation. This review will describe the three known WSTF-containing complexes and discuss their various roles as well as mechanisms of regulating WSTF activity.

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