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Oncogene. 2003 Mar 6;22(9):1273-80.

C/EBP family transcription factors are degraded by the proteasome but stabilized by forming dimer.

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Department of Molecular Health Sciences, Graduate School of Pharmaceutical Sciences, Nagoya University, Mizuho, Japan.


CCAAT/enhancer-binding protein (C/EBP) family transcription factors are critical for transcription of several genes involved in tissue development and cellular function, proliferation, and differentiation. Here we show that inhibitory/regulatory C/EBP family proteins, Ig/EBP (C/EBPgamma) and CHOP (C/EBPzeta), but not positively functioning NF-IL6 (C/EBPbeta), are constitutively multiubiquitinated and subsequently degraded by the proteasome. In addition, ubiquitination and degradation of these proteins are suppressed by forming dimer through their leucine zipper domains. Deletion of leucine zipper domain in NF-IL6 caused the loss of its homodimerization activity and the degradation of protein by the ubiquitin-proteasome system. In addition, Ig/EBP with its leucine zipper domain substituted for that of NF-IL6 formed homodimer and was stabilized. These observations suggest that mammalian cells equip a novel regulatory system abrogating the excess C/EBP family transcription factors bereft of dimerizing partner.

[Indexed for MEDLINE]

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