Nuclear respiratory factor 1 controls myocyte enhancer factor 2A transcription to provide a mechanism for coordinate expression of respiratory chain subunits.
ABSTRACT Nuclear respiratory factors NRF1 and NRF2 regulate the expression of nuclear genes encoding heme biosynthetic enzymes, proteins required for mitochondrial genome transcription and protein import, and numerous respiratory chain subunits. NRFs thereby coordinate the expression of nuclear and mitochondrial genes relevant to mitochondrial biogenesis and respiration. Only two of the nuclear-encoded respiratory chain subunits have evolutionarily conserved tissue-specific forms: the cytochrome c oxidase (COX) subunits VIa and VIIa heart/muscle (H) and ubiquitous (L) isoforms. We used genome comparisons to conclude that the promoter regions of COX6A(H) and COX7A(H) lack NRF sites but have conserved myocyte enhancer factor 2 (MEF2) elements. We show that MEF2A mRNA is induced with forced expression of NRF1 and that the MEF2A 5'-regulatory region contains an evolutionarily conserved canonical element that binds endogenous NRF1 in chromatin immunoprecipitation (ChIP) assays. NRF1 regulates MEF2A promoter-reporters according to overexpression, RNA interference underexpression, and promoter element mutation studies. As there are four mammalian MEF2 isotypes, we used an isoform-specific antibody in ChIP to confirm MEF2A binding to the COX6A(H) promoter. These findings support a role for MEF2A as an intermediary in coordinating respiratory chain subunit expression in heart and muscle through a NRF1 --> MEF2A --> COX(H) transcriptional cascade. MEF2A also bound the MEF2A and PPARGC1A promoters in ChIP, placing it within a feedback loop with PGC1alpha in controlling NRF1 activity. Interruption of this cascade and loop may account for striated muscle mitochondrial defects in mef2a null mice. Our findings also account for the previously described indirect regulation by NRF1 of other MEF2 targets in muscle such as GLUT4.
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ABSTRACT: We have previously demonstrated that important regulatory elements responsible for regulated expression of the human GLUT4 promoter are located between -1154 and -412 relative to transcription initiation (Olson, A. L., and Pessin, J. E. (1995) J. Biol. Chem. 270, 23491-23495). Through further analysis of this promoter regulatory region, we have identified a perfectly conserved myocyte enhancer factor 2 (MEF2)-binding domain (-CTAAAAATAG-) that is necessary, but not sufficient, to support tissue-specific expression of a chloramphenicol acetyltransferase reporter gene in transgenic mice. Biochemical analysis of this DNA element demonstrated the formation of a specific DNA-protein complex using nuclear extracts isolated from heart, hindquarter skeletal muscle, and adipose tissue but not from liver. DNA binding studies indicated that this element functionally interacted with the MEF2A and/or MEF2C MADS family of DNA binding transcription factors. MEF2 DNA binding activity was substantially reduced in nuclear extracts isolated from both heart and skeletal muscle of diabetic mice, which correlated with decreased transcription rate of the GLUT4 gene. MEF2 binding activity completely recovered to control levels following insulin treatment. Together these data demonstrated that MEF2 binding activity is necessary for regulation of the GLUT4 gene promoter in muscle and adipose tissue.Journal of Biological Chemistry 07/1998; 273(23):14285-92. · 4.65 Impact Factor
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ABSTRACT: Nuclear respiratory factor 1 (NRF-1) is a transcription factor that acts on nuclear genes encoding respiratory subunits and components of the mitochondrial transcription and replication machinery. Here we describe the isolation and characterization of the human gene encoding NRF-1. The human genomic sequences detected with NRF-1 cDNA probes at high stringency are all contained within seven overlapping recombinant lambda clones. The NRF-1 gene encompassed by these recombinants spans approximately 65 kilobases (kb) and has 11 exons and 10 introns that range in size from 0.8 to 15 kb. A rapid amplification of cDNA ends-polymerase chain reaction product containing the 5'-terminus of the NRF-1 cDNA has two exons from the 5'-untranslated region and terminates at a major transcription initiation site identified by S1 nuclease mapping. A genomic fragment containing a portion of the 5'-terminal exon and an additional 1 kb upstream had a functional promoter that was active in transfected COS cells, HeLa cells, and L6 myoblasts. The transcription initiation site utilized by the transfected promoter corresponded to that used by the endogenous gene in vivo. NRF-1 mRNA was expressed at very low levels in rat tissues compared with cytochrome c and, unlike cytochrome c, was most abundantly expressed in lung and testis. The NRF-1 gene was localized to human chromosome 7 by analysis of DNA from a panel of human-hamster cell hybrids with human-specific NRF-1 polymerase chain reaction primers. This assignment was further refined to 7q31 by cohybridization of NRF-1- and chromosome 7-specific probes to human metaphase chromosomes. These analyses should be useful in evaluating the potential role of NRF-1 in mitochondrial diseases resulting from defects in the nuclear control of mitochondrial function.Journal of Biological Chemistry 08/1995; 270(30):18019-25. · 4.65 Impact Factor
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ABSTRACT: The four MEF2 transcription factors (MEF2A, -B, -C, and -D) regulate differentiation and calcium-dependent gene expression in muscle cells. We generated mice deficient in MEF2A, the predominant Mef2 gene product expressed in post-natal cardiac muscle. Most mice lacking Mef2a died suddenly within the first week of life and exhibited pronounced dilation of the right ventricle, myofibrillar fragmentation, mitochondrial disorganization and activation of a fetal cardiac gene program. The few Mef2a(-/-) mice that survived to adulthood also showed a deficiency of cardiac mitochondria and susceptibility to sudden death. Paradoxically, MEF2 transcriptional activity, revealed by the expression of a MEF2-dependent transgene, was enhanced in the hearts of Mef2a-mutant mice, reflecting the transcriptional activation of residual MEF2D. These findings reveal specific roles for MEF2A in maintaining appropriate mitochondrial content and cyto-architectural integrity in the post-natal heart and show that other MEF2 isoforms cannot support these activities.Nature Medicine 12/2002; 8(11):1303-9. · 22.86 Impact Factor