Transcriptional activation of the H-ferritin gene in differentiated Caco-2 cells parallels a change in the activity of the nuclear factor Bbf

M. A. Bevilacqua, M. C. Faniello, P. D'Agostino, B. Quaresima, M. T. Tiano, S. Pignata, T. Russo, F. Cimino, F. Costanzo

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Abstract

In this paper, we examine the mechanisms that regulate the expression of the heavy (H) ferritin subunit in the colon carcinoma Caco-2 cell line allowed to differentiate spontaneously in vitro. The differentiation process of these cells in continuous culture is accompanied by an accumulation of the mRNA coding for the apoferritin H chain. The analysis of Caco-2 subclones stably transfected with an H-chain promoter-chloramphenicol acetyltransferase (CAT) construct revealed that the mRNA increase is paralleled by an enhanced transcription of the H gene, driven by the -100 to +4 region of the H promoter. The H gene transcriptional activation seems to be a specific feature of differentiated Caco-2 cells, since the activity of other promoters did not change upon differentiation. The - 100 to +4 region of the H promoter binds a transcription factor called Bbf (B-box binding factor); electrophoretic-mobility-shift-assay analyses showed that the retarded complex due to Bbf-H promoter interaction is significantly increased in the differentiated cells. We propose that the activation of H-ferritin gene expression may be associated with the establishment of a differentiated phenotype in Caco-2 cells, and that the H-ferritin gene transcriptional upregulation is accompanied by a modification in the activity of the transcription factor Bbf.

Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)769-773
Number of pages5
JournalBiochemical Journal
Volume311
Issue number3
Publication statusPublished - 1995

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • Biochemistry

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    Bevilacqua, M. A., Faniello, M. C., D'Agostino, P., Quaresima, B., Tiano, M. T., Pignata, S., Russo, T., Cimino, F., & Costanzo, F. (1995). Transcriptional activation of the H-ferritin gene in differentiated Caco-2 cells parallels a change in the activity of the nuclear factor Bbf. Biochemical Journal, 311(3), 769-773.