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Curr Biol. 2000 Jun 15;10(12):747-9.

Active maintenance of mHDA2/mHDAC6 histone-deacetylase in the cytoplasm.

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Laboratoire de Biologie Moléculaire et Cellulaire de la Différenciation, INSERM U309, La Tronche, France.


The intracellular localization, and thereby the function, of a number of key regulator proteins tagged with a short leucine-rich motif (the nuclear export signal or NES) is controlled by CRM1/exportin1, which is involved in the export of these proteins from the nucleus [1]. A common characteristic of these regulators is their transient action in the nucleus during either a specific phase of the cell cycle or in response to specific signals [1]. Here, we show that a particular member of the class II histone-deacetylases mHDA2/mHDAC6 [2] belongs to this family of cellular regulators that are present predominantly in the cytoplasm, but are also capable of shuttling between the nucleus and the cytoplasm. A very potent NES present at the amino terminus of mHDAC6 was found to play an essential role in this shuttling process. The sub-cellular localization of mHDAC6 appeared to be controlled by specific signals, since the arrest of cell proliferation was found to be associated with the translocation of a fraction of the protein into the nucleus. Data presented here suggest that mHDAC6 might be the first member of a functionally distinct class of deacetylases, responsible for activities not shared by other known histone deacetylases.

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