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Eukaryot Cell. 2004 Apr;3(2):339-47.

Identification, mutational analysis, and coactivator requirements of two distinct transcriptional activation domains of the Saccharomyces cerevisiae Hap4 protein.

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  • 1Graduate Program in Genetics and Department of Biochemistry and Molecular Biology, Michigan State University, East Lansing, Michigan 48824-1319, USA.


The Hap4 protein of the budding yeast Saccharomyces cerevisiae activates the transcription of genes that are required for growth on nonfermentable carbon sources. Previous reports suggested the presence of a transcriptional activation domain within the carboxyl-terminal half of Hap4 that can function in the absence of Gcn5, a transcriptional coactivator protein and histone acetyltransferase. The boundaries of this activation domain were further defined to a region encompassing amino acids 359 to 476. Within this region, several clusters of hydrophobic amino acids are critical for transcriptional activity. This activity does not require GCN5 or two other components of the SAGA coactivator complex, SPT3 and SPT8, but it does require SPT7 and SPT20. Contrary to previous reports, a Hap4 fragment comprising amino acids 1 to 330 can support the growth of yeast on lactate medium, and when tethered to lexA, can activate a reporter gene with upstream lexA binding sites, demonstrating the presence of a second transcriptional activation domain. In contrast to the C-terminal activation domain, the transcriptional activity of this N-terminal region depends on GCN5. We conclude that the yeast Hap4 protein has at least two transcriptional activation domains with strikingly different levels of dependence on specific transcriptional coactivator proteins.

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