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J Biol Chem. 1995 Mar 3;270(9):4299-304.

Characterization of a GC-rich region containing Sp1 binding site(s) as a constitutive responsive element of the alpha 2(I) collagen gene in human fibroblasts.

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  • 1Department of Medicine, Medical University of South Carolina, Charleston 29425.


To analyze regulatory elements in the human alpha 2(I) collagen gene (COL1A2) promoter, a series of deletion mutants from -323 to -186 base pairs was tested in transient transfection assays in human fibroblasts. A strong positive responsive element was mapped to a GC-rich region located between base pairs -303 and -271. This region contains three binding sites (GC-boxes) resembling recognition sites for the transcription factor Sp1. Substitution mutations in the GC-boxes abolished binding to the GC-rich region in gel shift analyses and resulted in 90% reduction of promoter activity in transient transfection assays. We demonstrated that transcription factor Sp1 is essential for binding based on the following observations. 1) Sp1 consensus binding site alone competes by binding to the GC-rich region in the DNase I protection assay; 2) both Sp1 consensus binding site and Sp1 antibodies prevent the formation of a DNA-protein complex in the mobility shift assay; 3) anti-Sp1 antibodies recognize a component of the complex competed for by Sp1 consensus binding site.

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