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Biochem Biophys Res Commun. 2006 Mar 24;341(4):1072-7. Epub 2006 Jan 25.

Cross talk of heat shock and heavy metal regulatory pathways.

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Department of Health Effects Research, National Institute of Industrial Health, 6-21-1 Nagao, Tama-ku, Kawasaki 214-8585, Japan.


Heavy metals induce transcription of human genes including those coding for metallothionein and heat shock protein 70 (HSP70). It has been suggested that these processes are mediated by metal-activated transcription factors, MTF-1 and HSF1, respectively, and are independent of each other. We raised an antibody against human MTF-1 which efficiently supershifts the protein-DNA complex formed by MTF-1 and its cognate binding sequence, MRE. We discovered that this antibody could also supershift complexes formed by HSF1 and its recognition sequence HSE, which suggested the involvement of MTF-1 in these complexes. This supershift was observed for HSF1/HSE complexes induced by Zn, Cd, Ag, and heat shock. Furthermore, overexpression of MTF-1 in HeLa cells markedly reduced metal-induced transcription from the hsp70-1 gene promoter which depends on HSF1. These data indicate that MTF-1 represses HSF1-mediated transcription probably through a direct protein-protein interaction, suggesting a cross talk of two lines of stress-responsive regulatory pathways.

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