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PLoS One. 2017 Jul 7;12(7):e0180776. doi: 10.1371/journal.pone.0180776. eCollection 2017.

HSF1 and HSF3 cooperatively regulate the heat shock response in lizards.

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Departments of Biochemistry and Molecular Biology, Yamaguchi University School of Medicine, Minami-Kogushi, Ube, Japan.
Department of Ecology and Evolutionary Biology, Graduate School of Life Sciences, Tohoku University, Sendai, Japan.


Cells cope with temperature elevations, which cause protein misfolding, by expressing heat shock proteins (HSPs). This adaptive response is called the heat shock response (HSR), and it is regulated mainly by heat shock transcription factor (HSF). Among the four HSF family members in vertebrates, HSF1 is a master regulator of HSP expression during proteotoxic stress including heat shock in mammals, whereas HSF3 is required for the HSR in birds. To examine whether only one of the HSF family members possesses the potential to induce the HSR in vertebrate animals, we isolated cDNA clones encoding lizard and frog HSF genes. The reconstructed phylogenetic tree of vertebrate HSFs demonstrated that HSF3 in one species is unrelated with that in other species. We found that the DNA-binding activity of both HSF1 and HSF3 in lizard and frog cells was induced in response to heat shock. Unexpectedly, overexpression of lizard and frog HSF3 as well as HSF1 induced HSP70 expression in mouse cells during heat shock, indicating that the two factors have the potential to induce the HSR. Furthermore, knockdown of either HSF3 or HSF1 markedly reduced HSP70 induction in lizard cells and resistance to heat shock. These results demonstrated that HSF1 and HSF3 cooperatively regulate the HSR at least in lizards, and suggest complex mechanisms of the HSR in lizards as well as frogs.

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