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Genes Dev. 1990 Aug;4(8):1316-21.

Regulation of amylase gene expression in diabetic mice is mediated by a cis-acting upstream element close to the pancreas-specific enhancer.

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Department of Human Genetics, University of Michigan, Ann Arbor 48109-0618.


We localized the cis-acting sequences that mediate the regulation of a pancreatic amylase gene, Amy-2.2, in diabetic mice. We constructed three hybrid genes containing sequences from the 5'-flanking region of the amylase gene upstream of the heterologous elastase promoter linked to the CAT structural gene. These constructs were transferred to the germ line of transgenic mice by microinjection of fertilized eggs. The amylase sequences had two effects on expression of the elastase promoter: Basal expression was increased, and expression in diabetic animals was reduced to approximately 2% of basal levels. A 30-bp amylase fragment was sufficient to transfer both of these regulatory functions to the elastase promoter. Sequences within this 30-bp fragment are included in the binding site for the pancreatic nuclear protein PTF1. The close association of the PTF1-binding site and the regulatory functions is consistent with a mechanism based on interference with activation by PTF1 in diabetic pancreas. PTF1-binding activity is not reduced in diabetic pancreas. The data presented here demonstrate that the 5'-flanking region of the pancreatic amylase gene contains a novel insulin-dependent element (IDE) that mediates the loss of expression in diabetic animals.

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