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Mol Cell Neurosci. 2004 Mar;25(3):536-47.

Tyrosine hydroxylase transcription depends primarily on cAMP response element activity, regardless of the type of inducing stimulus.

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Department of Neurobiology, Duke University Medical Center, Durham, NC 27710, USA.


In neurons and neuroendocrine cells, tyrosine hydroxylase (TH) gene expression is induced by stimuli that elevate cAMP, by depolarization, and by hypoxia. Using these stimuli, we examined TH promoter mutants, cAMP response element binding protein (CREB) phosphorylation site mutants, and transcriptional interference with dominant negative transcription factors to assess the relative contributions of CREB/AP-1 family members to the regulation of basal and inducible TH transcription in PC12 cells. We found that basal transcription depends on transcription factor activity at the partial dyad (-17 bp), CRE (-45 bp), and AP1 (-205 bp) elements. Induced transcription is regulated primarily by activity at the CRE, with only small contributions from the AP1 or hypoxia response element 1 (HRE1; -225 bp) elements, regardless of inducing stimulus. CREB, ATF-1, and CREMtau all mediate CRE-dependent transcription, with CREB and CREMtau being more effective than ATF-1. Phosphorylation of CREB on Ser133, but not on Ser142 or Ser143, is required for induced transcription, regardless of inducing stimulus.

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