Retinoblastoma/p107/p130 pocket proteins: Protein dynamics and interactions with target gene promoters

Kimmel Cancer Center, Thomas Jefferson University, Philadelphia, Pennsylvania 19107, USA.
Journal of Biological Chemistry (Impact Factor: 4.57). 04/2009; 284(29):19265-71. DOI: 10.1074/jbc.M808740200
Source: PubMed

ABSTRACT The retinoblastoma (RB) tumor suppressor and its family members, p107 and p130, function by repressing E2F transcription factor activity to limit the expression of genes required for cell cycle progression. Traditionally, it is thought that the RB family proteins repress E2F target gene expression through complexing with E2F at gene promoters. However, whereas chromatin immunoprecipitation experiments have demonstrated p107 and p130 at E2F-responsive promoters, RB chromatin association has not been reliably observed. Here we used green fluorescent protein-tagged proteins to rigorously explore the mechanism of RB-mediated transcriptional repression relative to its p107 and p130 family members. The use of live cell fluorescent imaging demonstrated that RB, p107, and p130 exhibit similar nuclear dynamics. Although these findings suggest a similar engagement with nuclear structures, chromatin immunoprecipitation approaches with multiple independent antibodies failed to detect the association of RB with target gene promoters. However, by employing antibodies directed against green fluorescent protein, we could utilize the same antibody to assess RB, p107, and p130 engagement. This approach demonstrated RB association with target gene promoters in a fashion analogous to p107 and p130. Extension of this technology demonstrated that direct RB phosphorylation disrupts promoter association to regulate transcription. Thus, RB is associated with promoters in a manner similar to p107/p130 and that association is modulated by phosphorylation during cell cycle progression.

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