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Nihon Yakurigaku Zasshi. 2004 Apr;123(4):235-42.

[The regulatory mechanism for neuron specific expression of PACAP gene].

[Article in Japanese]

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Department of Pharmacology, Postgraduate School of Medical and Dental Sciences, Kagoshima University, Japan.


Pituitary adenylate cyclase-activating polypeptide (PACAP), a pleiotropic neuropeptide, is present abundantly in the central nervous system. In the 5'-flanking region of the PACAP gene, we found and characterized two negative regulatory elements, which are homologous to the neural-restrictive silencer element (NRSE). Their sequence and position were significantly conserved among mouse, human, and rat PACAP genes. NRSE is a crucial negative-acting DNA regulatory element for neuron-specific gene expression. NRSE acts through the transcription factor known as neural-restrictive silencer factor (NRSF). In non-neuronal cells, NRSF suppresses the expression of neuron-specific genes. On the other hand, in neuronal cells, NRnV, a NRSF truncated form, repress their expressions in a dominant negative manner. The electrophoretic mobility shift assay with 3T3 cells extract demonstrated the identical complexes among NRSLE-1, NRSLE2, and the NRSE of rat type II sodium channel gene. In the luciferase reporter assay, NRSLEs suppressed SV40 promoter activity in 3T3 cells, but not in PC12 cells. RT-PCR analysis revealed that PACAP and NRnV mRNAs are expressed in neuronal cells (differentiated PC12), but not in non-neuronal cells (3T3 or C6). These results suggested that the NRSE-NRSF system might be involved in the regulatory mechanism of neuron-specific expression of the PACAP gene.

[Indexed for MEDLINE]

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