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Gene. 2006 Nov 15;383:99-107. Epub 2006 Aug 2.

Multiple regulatory regions and tissue-specific transcription initiation mediate the expression of NEMO/IKKgamma gene.

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Institute of Genetics and Biophysics Adriano Buzzati-Traverso (IGB-CNR), Via P. Castellino 111, 80131, Naples, Italy.


NEMO/IKKgamma gene, which is responsible of two allelic diseases in human, EDA-ID and IP, encodes for a protein with a central regulatory role in the activation of the NF-kB pathway. We here provide insights into the molecular mechanism governing NEMO/IKKgamma expression. We mapped 4 distinctive NEMO/IKKgamma transcription start sites each corresponding to an alternative first exon, controlled by two conserved promoters. A distal promoter, named promoter A, located 10 kb upstream of the coding region and a proximal promoter, promoter B, with strong bi-directional activity driving also the transcription of G6PD gene in the opposite direction. The promoter B is housekeeping, it is embedded in a CpG island, required for proper expression and it is down-regulated by methylation. The promoter A is active in cells of hepatic origin and it directs transcription of the main NEMO/IKKgamma 5' UTR alternative transcript in liver, which starts at a tissue-specific site. Qualitative and quantitative expression analysis revealed that each NEMO/IKKgamma 5' UTR alternative transcript has different expression profiles indicating that the control of NEMO/IKKgamma expression is mediated through tissue-specific transcription initiation sites and multiple regulatory regions.

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