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FEBS Lett. 2006 Jan 9;580(1):58-62. Epub 2005 Dec 6.

Cooperative interaction of Zhangfei and ATF4 in transactivation of the cyclic AMP response element.

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Department of Molecular and Cellular Biology, University of Guelph, Axelrod Building, Room 334, 50 Stone Road East, Guelph, Ont., Canada N1G 2W1.


Zhangfei (ZF) is a basic region-leucine zipper protein that has been implicated in herpesvirus infection cycle and related cellular processes. Here we show both in vivo and in vitro data demonstrating that ZF is a novel cellular binding partner of activating transcription factor 4 (ATF4) (or CREB2). We found that ZF competed with ATF4 to form ATF4-ZF heterodimeric complexes through the bZIP regions. ZF enhanced ATF4 binding to the cAMP response element (CRE), and augmented activation of a CRE reporter by ATF4, in response to MEK1 activation. These results suggest an important role of ZF in the MEK1-ATF4 signaling pathway.

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