The Akirin family of transcription cofactors are involved throughout the metazoan in the regulation of different biological processes such as immunity, interdigital regression, muscle and neural development. Akirin do not have catalytic or DNA-binding capability and exert its regulatory function primarily through interacting proteins such as transcription factors, chromatin remodelers, and RNA-associated proteins. In this study, we focused on the human Akirin2 regulome and interactome in neutrophil-like model human Caucasian promyelocytic leukemia HL60 cells. Our hypothesis is that metazoan evolved to have Akirin2 functional complements and different Akirin2-mediated mechanisms for the regulation of gene expression. To address this hypothesis, experiments were conducted using transcriptomics, proteomics and systems biology approaches in akirin2 knockdown and wildtype HL60 cells to characterize Akirin2 gene/protein targets, functional complements and to provide evidence of different mechanisms that may be involved in Akirin2-mediated regulation of gene expression. The results revealed Akirin2 gene/protein targets in multiple biological processes with higher representation of immunity and identified immune response genes as candidate Akirin2 functional complements. In addition to linking chromatin remodelers with transcriptional activation, Akirin2 also interacts with histone H3.1 for regulation of gene expression.

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