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Mol Biol Cell. 2018 Jan 1;29(1):42-52. doi: 10.1091/mbc.E17-06-0418. Epub 2017 Nov 8.

Golgi stress-induced transcriptional changes mediated by MAPK signaling and three ETS transcription factors regulate MCL1 splicing.

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BioMed X Innovation Center, 69120 Heidelberg, Germany.
Translational Innovation Platform Oncology, Merck Biopharma, Merck KGaA, 64293 Darmstadt, Germany.
BioMed X Innovation Center, 69120 Heidelberg, Germany


The secretory pathway is a major determinant of cellular homoeostasis. While research into secretory stress signaling has so far mostly focused on the endoplasmic reticulum (ER), emerging data suggest that the Golgi itself serves as an important signaling hub capable of initiating stress responses. To systematically identify novel Golgi stress mediators, we performed a transcriptomic analysis of cells exposed to three different pharmacological compounds known to elicit Golgi fragmentation: brefeldin A, golgicide A, and monensin. Subsequent gene-set enrichment analysis revealed a significant contribution of the ETS family transcription factors ELK1, GABPA/B, and ETS1 to the control of gene expression following compound treatment. Induction of Golgi stress leads to a late activation of the ETS upstream kinases MEK1/2 and ERK1/2, resulting in enhanced ETS factor activity and the transcription of ETS family target genes related to spliceosome function and cell death induction via alternate MCL1 splicing. Further genetic analyses using loss-of-function and gain-of-function experiments suggest that these transcription factors operate in parallel.

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