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J Biol Chem. 1999 Dec 17;274(51):36488-97.

p53 and tumor necrosis factor alpha regulate the expression of a mitochondrial chloride channel protein.

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Laboratory of Cellular Carcinogenesis and Tumor Promotion, NCI, National Institutes of Health, Bethesda, Maryland 20892, USA.


A novel chloride intracellular channel (CLIC) gene, clone mc3s5/mtCLIC, has been identified from differential display analysis of differentiating mouse keratinocytes from p53+/+ and p53-/- mice. The 4.2-kilobase pair cDNA contains an open reading frame of 762 base pairs encoding a 253-amino acid protein with two putative transmembrane domains. mc3s5/mtCLIC protein shares extensive homology with a family of intracellular organelle chloride channels but is the first shown to be differentially regulated. mc3s5/mtCLIC mRNA is expressed to the greatest extent in vivo in heart, lung, liver, kidney, and skin, with reduced levels in some organs from p53-/- mice. mc3s5/mtCLIC mRNA and protein are higher in p53+/+ compared with p53-/- basal keratinocytes in culture, and both increase in differentiating keratinocytes independent of genotype. Overexpression of p53 in keratinocytes induces mc3s5/mtCLIC mRNA and protein. Exogenous human recombinant tumor necrosis factor alpha also up-regulates mc3s5/mtCLIC mRNA and protein in keratinocytes. Subcellular fractionation of keratinocytes indicates that both the green fluorescent protein-mc3s5 fusion protein and the endogenous mc3s5/mtCLIC are localized to the cytoplasm and mitochondria. Similarly, mc3s5/mtCLIC was localized to mitochondria and cytoplasmic fractions of rat liver homogenates. Furthermore, mc3s5/mtCLIC colocalized with cytochrome oxidase in keratinocyte mitochondria by immunofluorescence and was also detected in the cytoplasmic compartment. Sucrose gradient-purified mitochondria from rat liver confirmed this mitochondrial localization. This represents the first report of localization of a CLIC type chloride channel in mitochondria and the first indication that expression of an organellular chloride channel can be regulated by p53 and tumor necrosis factor alpha.

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