JOURNAL ARTICLE

Heme-dependent up-regulation of the alpha-globin gene expression by transcriptional repressor Bach1 in erythroid cells

Tsuyoshi Tahara, Jiying Sun, Kazuhiko Igarashi, Shigeru Taketani
Biochemical and Biophysical Research Communications 2004 November 5, 324 (1): 77-85
15464985
The transcriptional factor Bach1 forms a heterodimer with small Maf family, and functions as a repressor of the Maf recognition element (MARE) in vivo. To investigate the involvement of Bach1 in the heme-dependent regulation of the expression of the alpha-globin gene, human erythroleukemia K562 cells were cultured with succinylacetone (SA), a heme biosynthetic inhibitor, and the level of alpha-globin mRNA was examined. A decrease of alpha-globin mRNA was observed in SA-treated cells, which was restored by the addition of hemin. The heme-dependent expression of alpha-globin occurred at the transcriptional level since the expression of human alpha-globin gene promoter-reporter gene containing hypersensitive site-40 (HS-40) was decreased when K562 cells were cultured with SA. Hemin treatment restored the decrease of the promoter activity by SA. The regulation of the HS-40 activity by heme was dependent on the NF-E2/AP-1 (NA) site, which is similar to MARE. The NA site-binding activity of Bach1 in K562 increased upon SA-treatment, and the increase was diminished by the addition of hemin. The transient expression of Bach1 and mutated Bach1 lacking CP motifs suppressed the HS-40 activity, and cancellation of the repressor activity by hemin was observed when wild-type Bach1 was expressed. The expression of NF-E2 strengthened the restoration of the Bach1-effect by hemin. Interestingly, nuclear localization of Bach1 increased when cells were treated with SA, while hemin induced the nuclear export of Bach1. These results indicated that heme plays an important role in the induction of alpha-globin gene expression through disrupting the interaction of Bach1 and the NA site in HS-40 enhancer in erythroid cells.

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