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Cell. 1990 Sep 7;62(5):1007-18.

The DNA binding subunit of NF-kappa B is identical to factor KBF1 and homologous to the rel oncogene product.

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  • 1Unité de Biologie Moléculaire du Gène, U.277 INSERM, U.A.C. 115 CNRS, Institut Pasteur, Paris, France.


The major determinant in the transcriptional control of class I genes of the major histocompatibility complex is an enhancer sequence located around -170 from the transcription start site, which binds a factor named KBF1. We have isolated a complementary cDNA coding for KBF1 and identified the DNA binding and dimerization domain of the protein. Because KBF1 and the transcription factor NF-kappa B bind to similar sequences, we investigated the relationship between these two molecules. It appeared that KBF1 is, by all criteria used, identical to the 50 kd DNA binding subunit of NF-kappa B. KBF1 (and therefore p50) also displays extensive amino acid sequence homology with the v-rel oncogene and the Drosophila maternal morphogen dorsal. In vitro experiments suggest functional homologies between KBF1 and v-rel.

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