E2F6 is widely expressed in human tissues and cell lines. Recent studies have demonstrated its involvement in developmental patterning and in the regulation of various genes implicated in chromatin remodelling. Despite a growing number of studies, nothing is really known concerning the E2F6 expression regulation. To understand how cells control E2F6 expression, we analysed the activity of the previously cloned promoter region of the human E2F6 gene. DNase I footprinting, gel electrophoreticmobility shift, transient transfection and site-directed mutagenesis experiments allowed the identification of two functional NRF-1/α-PAL (nuclear respiratory factor-1/α-palindrome-binding protein)-binding sites within the human E2F6 core promoter region, which are conserved in the mouse and rat E2F6 promoter region. Moreover, ChIP (chromatin immunoprecipitation) analysis demonstrated that overexpressed NRF-1/α-PAL is associated in vivo with the E2F6 promoter. Furthermore, overexpression of full-length NRF-1/α-PAL enhanced E2F6 promoter activity, whereas expression of its dominant-negative form reduced the promoter activity. Our results indicate that NRF-1/α-PAL is implicated in the regulation of basal E2F6 gene expression.

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