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Differentiation. 1990 Feb;42(3):191-8.

Expression of various viral and cellular enhancer-promoters during differentiation of human embryonal carcinoma cells.

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Department of Applied Biological Science, Science University of Tokyo, Chiba, Japan.


Alterations in the pattern of gene expression were studied during differentiation of the human embryonal carcinoma (EC) cell line NEC14. NEC14 cells can be induced to differentiate by the addition of 10(-2) M N,N'-hexamethylene-bis-acetamide (HMBA). The efficiency of DNA transfection of undifferentiated and differentiated NEC14 cells was compared by measuring the activities of endogenous and exogenously introduced promoters for the beta-actin gene and heat shock protein 70 gene. The results indicated that the efficiency was not significantly different in cells of these two states. Under the conditions used, all the viral enhancer-promoters tested showed very little or no activity in undifferentiated cells, but activities of SV40, BKV, adenovirus and RSV enhancers were greatly increased after differentiation. Activities of these viral enhancers in differentiated cells were completely repressed by cotransfection with the adenovirus E1A gene. An E1A-inducible promoter of the adenovirus E2 gene showed stronger activity in differentiated than in undifferentiated cells, and was not activated efficiently by cotransfection with the E1A gene in either undifferentiated or differentiated cells. These results indicate that factor(s) regulating activities of various enhancer-promoters in NEC14 cells is or are different from E1A-like factor(s) present in mouse EC F9 cells.

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