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Mol Cell Biol. 1993 Oct;13(10):6314-25.

A genetic analysis of the E2F1 gene distinguishes regulation by Rb, p107, and adenovirus E4.

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  • 1Section of Genetics, Howard Hughes Medical Institute, Duke University Medical Center, Durham, North Carolina 27710.


The cellular transcription factor E2F appears to be a target for the regulatory action of the retinoblastoma tumor suppressor gene product. The recent isolation of the E2F1 cDNA clone, which encodes a polypeptide with properties characteristic of E2F, has now allowed a more detailed analysis of the regulation of E2F function by Rb as well as the Rb-related p107 protein and the adenovirus 19-kDa E4 gene product. Previous experiments have shown that each of these regulatory proteins can modulate the activity of cellular E2F. We find that each of these regulatory events can be mediated through the E2F1 product. Moreover, an examination of various E2F1 mutations reveals distinct specificities for these regulatory proteins. For instance, the ability of E4 to alter E2F1 function is dependent upon sequences within a putative leucine repeat of E2F1 as well as within the C-terminal acidic domain. In contrast, the leucine repeat element was not important for Rb- or p107-mediated inhibition of E2F1 activity. Although the C-terminal acidic domain of E2F1, previously shown to be important for Rb binding, appears to be a site for regulation of E2F1 by Rb and p107, point mutations within this region distinguish recognition by Rb and p107. These results underscore the complexity of E2F regulatory interactions and also demonstrate a qualitative distinction in the interactions of Rb and p107 with E2F1, perhaps reflective of functional differences.

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