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Mol Pharmacol. 2004 Mar;65(3):761-9.

DAXX, FLASH, and FAF-1 modulate mineralocorticoid and glucocorticoid receptor-mediated transcription in hippocampal cells--toward a basis for the opposite actions elicited by two nuclear receptors?

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Max Planck Institute of Psychiatry, Munich, Germany.


Mineralocorticoid (MR) and glucocorticoid (GR) receptors are two closely-related members of the steroid nuclear receptor family of transcription factors that bind common ligands in the brain (corticosterone and cortisol) and supposedly have identical hormone response elements. This raises the important question of how they can elicit differential biological actions in neurons in which they are often colocalized. One plausible explanation is that they differentially recruit proteins (coregulators or other receptor-interacting factors) through cell-specific interactions with regions that diverge between MR and GR to modulate target gene transcription in a receptor-specific manner. We therefore performed a yeast-two-hybrid screening of a human brain cDNA library with an AF1-containing region of the human MR as bait. This screening revealed several potential MR-interacting partners; among them were several clones bearing homology to DAXX, FLASH, and FAF-1, all previously implicated in apoptosis. Coexpression of candidate clones in a mouse hippocampal cell line confirmed these interactions in a mammalian neural cell environment as well. In transient transactivation assays, DAXX and FLASH influenced MR- and GR-driven transcription of the MMTV-Luc reporter similarly; in contrast, although FAF-1 did not transactivate GR, it did selectively stimulate MR-mediated transcription. Thus, the present findings, that 1) DAXX, FLASH, and FAF-1 modulate the transcriptional activities of MR and GR and that 2) FAF-1 selectively coactivates only MR, provide possible clues for how these closely related receptors might differentially influence neuronal function.

[Indexed for MEDLINE]

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