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A peptide corresponding to position 32-47 in tyrosine hydroxylase was synthesized (TH-16) and polyclonal antibodies against this peptide were raised in rabbits (anti-TH-16). The effects of anti-TH-16 on modulation of tyrosine hydroxylase activity were investigated. Anti-TH-16 enhanced the enzymatic activity in a concentration-dependent manner, and the antigen TH-16 inhibited the stimulatory activity of the antiserum in a concentration-dependent manner. The activated enzyme had a lower Km app for the cofactor 2-amino-4-hydroxy-6-methyl-5,6,7,8-tetrahydropterin and a higher Vmax app than the nonactivated enzyme. Anti-TH-16 was characterized further by its ability to immunoprecipitate the enzyme activity by labeling tyrosine hydroxylase after Western blotting and by immunohistochemical labeling of catecholaminergic neurons. Anti-TH-16 did not block activation of tyrosine hydroxylase by phosphorylation catalyzed by cyclic AMP-dependent protein kinase. Exposure of the enzyme to anti-TH-16 and subsequent phosphorylation of the enzyme resulted in a greater activation of the enzyme than the sum of activation produced by these two treatments separately. However, the activation was less than additive when the enzyme was first phosphorylated and subsequently exposed to anti-TH-16. The present study demonstrates the utility of anti-TH-16 in investigating the molecular aspects of the enzyme activation.
Protein purification and molecular cloning have defined five classes of protein serine-threonine phosphatase catalytic subunits referred to as types 1, 2A, 2B (calcineurin), 2C, and X. Protein serine-threonine phosphatases 1, 2A, 2B, and X appear to have significant sequence homologies, whereas the 2C enzyme is more divergent. We have used the polymerase chain reaction to define the multiplicity of the closely related types 1, 2A, 2B, and X phosphatase catalytic subunits in two clonal cell lines, rat PC12 pheochromocytoma and rat FTO-2B hepatoma. RNAs for all four related phosphatase types were expressed in both cell lines. In addition to the phosphatase X enzyme, four phosphatase 1, two phosphatase 2A, and three phosphatase 2B isoforms were identified in PC12 and FTO-2B cells. The results indicate a large multiplicity of protein serine-threonine phosphatases within clonal cells of different tissue origin, suggesting that their role in cell regulation will be as divergent as that for the protein serine-threonine kinases.
By utilizing chimeric genes constructed from 5'-flanking sequences of the human CYP21B (P-450C21) gene and reporter genes (chloramphenicol acetyltransferase or rabbit beta-globin), a 34-nucleotide sequence has been found to be required for cAMP-dependent transcription. This sequence (-129/-96 base pairs) shows no homology to that of the consensus (CRE) cAMP-regulatory element. Gel retardation analysis shows that a protein-DNA complex is formed between this DNA sequence and nuclear proteins from mouse adrenal Y1 tumor cells or bovine adrenal cortical cells or human fetal adrenal tissue and that formation of this complex cannot be competed by DNA containing the consensus CRE sequence. Even though cAMP-enhanced accumulation of P-450C21 mRNA in primary cultures of bovine adrenocortical cells is inhibited by the protein synthesis inhibitor, cycloheximide, reporter gene transcription enhanced by the cAMP-responsive -129/-96-base pair fragment of the human CYP21B gene is not. We conclude that cAMP-dependent transcription of the human P-450C21 gene (CYP21B), an event required for maintenance of optimal steroidogenic capacity in the adrenal cortex, involves a stable transcription factor(s) distinct from the CRE-binding protein. Furthermore the cAMP-dependent cis-regulatory element of the human P-450C21 gene is distinct from those found associated with the other steroid hydroxylase genes, 17 alpha-hydroxylase cytochrome P-450, cholesterol side chain cleavage cytochrome P-450, and 11 beta-hydroxylase cytochrome P-450, suggesting that each of these genes may require its own set of specific transcription factors for cAMP-dependent regulation.
The promoter/regulatory region of the bovine CYP11A (P-450scc) gene was cloned from a bovine genomic library. One major start site of transcription was identified by primer extension analysis with a minor start site four nucleotides further upstream. A putative TATA box is located at position -31, and at position -68 resides a putative binding site for the transcription factor Sp1. Transient transfection of chimeric reporter gene constructs into mouse adrenal tumor Y1 cells was used to locate regions within the P-450scc 5'-flanking sequences that are important for basal and cAMP-dependent transcription of the reporter genes. While cAMP-dependent accumulation of mRNA derived from expression of the endogenous bovine P-450scc gene can be inhibited by protein synthesis inhibitors, transcription of reporter gene constructs containing the promoter/regulatory region of the P-450scc gene is not affected by cycloheximide following transient transfection of Y1 cells or primary bovine adrenocortical cells. Basal expression of these constructs as well as cAMP responsiveness is reduced upon deletion of sequences between -186 and -101, further deletion to -50 leading to loss of virtually all the remaining cAMP responsiveness. The sequence between -183 and -83 alone will direct both basal and cAMP-enhanced transcription when fused to a heterologous promoter and is equally active in either the correct or reverse orientation. No homology to the consensus cAMP-responsive element (CRE) or AP-2 binding site is found in this region whereas an activator protein 1-like sequence is found at position -116. It is concluded that the cAMP responsiveness of P-450scc gene expression is mediated by sequences different from canonical consensus regulatory elements. Whether or not there are sequences conferring cAMP responsiveness which are common both to P-450scc and the other steroidogenic P-450 genes remains to be established.
Regions within the 5'-flanking sequence of the bovine CYP17 (P-450(17)alpha) gene which are required for cAMP-dependent regulation of transcription have been localized by transient transfection of chimeric reporter gene constructs into mouse adrenal tumor Y1 cells. Two sequences have been found which individually confer cAMP responsiveness to reporter genes; they are located at -243/-225 and -80/-40 base pairs (bp). Obvious sequence homology between these two regions is not apparent. Gel shift competition analysis indicates that nuclear protein(s) binding to the -243/-225-bp region can be competed for by the addition of a double-stranded oligonucleotide containing a consensus cAMP-responsive element (CRE) from the human chorionic gonadotropin alpha gene, whereas addition of this CRE does not abolish protein-DNA complexes formed with fragments containing the -80/-40-bp sequence. Gel shift and Southwestern analysis indicate that the -243/-225-bp region of the P-450(17)alpha gene and the CRE both bind a 47-kDa protein and that the CRE binds additional proteins (43 and 68 kDa) not apparently recognized by the -243/-225-bp sequence. Thus cAMP-dependent regulation of the bovine P-450(17)alpha gene appears to involve two independent cis-regulatory regions, neither of which contains a consensus CRE. Based on protein binding analysis, one of these regions (that including -80/-40 bp) is distinct from the consensus CRE while the other (that containing -243/-225 bp) may be related to the consensus CRE.
In the 25-year period 1950-1975 forty-four patients with pheochromocytoma were observed at Vanderbilt University Affiliated Hospitals. Bilateral adrenal tumors occurred in 3 patients (6.8%) and extra-adrenal tumors occurred in 7 others (16%), 33 patients (75%) had single tumors arising in one of the adrenal glands; in one of these 5 years after operation, a malignant tumor developed in the same renal fossa. Five of the 44 patients (11.3%) proved to have malignant tumors and died with metastases. In 11 patients in the earlier years of this study the clinical diagnosis was not made and the tumor was identified by the pathologist at autopsy. There was a single postoperative fatality among the 33 patients in whom the clinical diagnosis was made. Seventy per cent of all survivors with benign tumors have remained normotensive during followup periods of one to 20 years.