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J Biol Chem June 28, 2002; 277 (26): 23872-81.

Cooperative interaction of Xvent-2 and GATA-2 in the activation of the ventral homeobox gene Xvent-1B.

The Xvent family of homeobox transcription factors is essential for the establishment of the dorsal-ventral body axis during Xenopus embryogenesis. In contrast to Xvent-2B and other members of the Xvent-2 subfamily, Xvent-1B is not a direct response gene of bone morphogenetic protein-4 signaling. Xvent-1B is activated by Xvent-2, but CHX experiments revealed the requirement of additional factors. In this study, we report on the cooperative effect of Xvent-2 and the zinc finger transcription factor GATA-2 on the promoter of the Xvent-1B gene. We show that GATA-2 is a direct target gene of bone morphogenetic protein-4 and that GATA-2 interacts with Xvent-2 to activate transcription of Xvent-1B. Both transcription factors bind to distinct elements within the Xvent-1B promoter, and GATA-2 physically interacts with the C-terminal domain of Xvent-2. Promoter/reporter studies in Xenopus embryos revealed that full activation of Xvent-1B requires both Xvent-2 and GATA-2. Moreover, the two factors are sufficient to direct transcription of Xvent-1B in the presence of CHX at the ventral side of the embryo. The failure of both factors to activate Xvent-1B on the dorsal side suggests the existence of a dorsal inhibitor. This inhibitor is likely a component of the dorsal Wnt signaling pathway because nuclear translocation of beta-catenin before midblastula transition results in a suppression of Xvent-1B transcription.

PubMed ID: 11964398
Article link: J Biol Chem

Species referenced: Xenopus laevis
Genes referenced: gata2 myc ventx1.1 ventx2.1 ventx2.2

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