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Nuclear respiratory factor 1 regulates all ten nuclear-encoded subunits of cytochrome c oxidase in neurons.


ABSTRACT: Cytochrome c oxidase (COX) is one of only four bigenomic proteins in mammalian cells, having ten subunits encoded in the nuclear genome and three in the mitochondrial DNA. The mechanism of its bigenomic control is not well understood. The ten nuclear subunits are on different chromosomes, and the possibility of their coordinate regulation by the same transcription factor(s) deserves serious consideration. The present study tested our hypothesis that nuclear respiratory factor 1 (NRF-1) serves such a role in subunit coordination. Following in silico analysis of murine nuclear-encoded COX subunit promoters, electrophoretic mobility shift and supershift assays indicated NRF-1 binding to all ten promoters. In vivo chromatin immunoprecipitation assays also showed NRF-1 binding to all ten promoters in murine neuroblastoma cells. Site-directed mutagenesis of putative NRF-1 binding sites confirmed the functionality of NRF-1 binding on all ten COX promoters. These sites are highly conserved among mice, rats, and humans. Silencing of NRF-1 with RNA interference reduced all ten COX subunit mRNAs and mRNAs of other genes involved in mitochondrial biogenesis. We conclude that NRF-1 plays a significant role in coordinating the transcriptional regulation of all ten nuclear-encoded COX subunits in neurons. Moreover, NRF-1 is known to activate mitochondrial transcription factors A and B, thereby indirectly regulating the expressions of the three mitochondrial-encoded COX subunits. Thus, NRF-1 and our previously described NRF-2 prove to be the two key bigenomic coordinators for transcriptional regulation of all cytochrome c oxidase subunits in neurons. Possible interactions between the NRFs will be investigated in the future.

SUBMITTER: Dhar SS 

PROVIDER: S-EPMC2669777 | BioStudies | 2008-01-01

REPOSITORIES: biostudies

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