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Endocrinology. 1976 May;98(5):1092-100.

Binding of cytosol receptor-glucocorticoid complexes by isolated nuclei of glucocorticoid-responsive and nonresponsive cultured cells.


Nuclear binding of the AtT-20 cytosol receptor-glucocorticoid complex was studied in a cell-free system using nuclei from steroid-responsive (AtT-20) and nonresponsive (EPO-G1) cell lines, both of which synthesize ACTH. The AtT-20 cell line was derived from a mouse pituitary adenocarcinoma, while the EPO cell line was established from a human malignant melanoma. The nonresponsive EPO cells lacked a cytosol receptor for glucocorticoids, and, when whole cells were incubated with labeled glucocorticoid, they were unable to concentrate the steroid in their nuclei. A cell-free system using AtT-20 cytosol preincubated with labeled glucocorticoid was used to study binding by isolated nuclei. Binding to isolated nuclei from both cell lines was indistinguishable, in terms of temperature sensitivity, binding capacity, and saturability. Sucrose density gradient analyses of KCl extracts of nuclei labeled under these cell-free conditions showed 3.2-3.6 S peaks. In contrast, a 4.0 S peak was observed consistently when unreacted cytosol was analyzed on high-salt gradients, suggesting that interaction with nuclei from both cell lines caused the receptor to alter its sedimentation characteristics. These findings suggest either that all cells contain nuclear acceptor sites and that target cell responsiveness is conferred solely by the presence or absence of the cytosol receptor, or that binding sites detected in isolated nuclei may be different from those observed in intact cells and may, in fact, obscure them.

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