Article

Fox-3 and PSF interact to activate neural cell-specific alternative splicing

Laboratory of Molecular Cardiology, National Heart, Lung, and Blood Institute, National Institute of Allergy and Infectious Disease, National Institutes of Health, Bethesda, MD 20892, USA.
Nucleic Acids Research (Impact Factor: 9.11). 12/2010; 39(8):3064-78. DOI: 10.1093/nar/gkq1221
Source: PubMed

ABSTRACT Fox-1 family (Fox) proteins, which consist of Fox-1 (A2BP1), Fox-2 (Rbm9) and Fox-3 (NeuN) in mammals, bind to the RNA element UGCAUG and regulate alternative pre-mRNA splicing. However the mechanisms for Fox-regulated splicing are largely unknown. We analyzed the expression pattern of the three Fox proteins as well as neural cell-specific alternative splicing of a cassette exon N30 of nonmuscle myosin heavy chain (NMHC) II-B in the mouse central nervous system. Histological and biochemical analyses following fluorescence-activated cell sorting demonstrate a positive correlation of N30 inclusion and Fox-3 expression. Further, we identified polypyrimidine tract binding protein-associated splicing factor (PSF) as an interacting protein with Fox-3 by affinity-chromatography. In cultured cells, enhancement of N30 inclusion by Fox-3 depends on the presence of PSF. PSF enhances N30 inclusion in a UGCAUG-dependent manner, although it does not bind directly to this element. Fox-3 is recruited to the UGCAUG element downstream of N30 in the endogenous NMHC II-B transcript in a PSF-dependent manner. This study is the first to identify PSF as a coactivator of Fox proteins and provides evidence that the Fox-3 and PSF interaction is an integral part of the mechanism by which Fox proteins regulate activation of alternative exons via a downstream intronic enhancer.

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