Regulatory factor X2 (RFX2) binds to the H1t/TE1 promoter element and activates transcription of the testis-specific histone H1t gene
Wolfe, S.A.; Wilkerson, D.C.; Prado, S.; Grimes, S.R.
Journal of Cellular Biochemistry 91(2): 375-383
Transcription of the mammalian testis-specific linker histone H1t gene occurs only in pachytene primary spermatocytes during spermatogenesis. Studies of the wild type (Wt) and mutant H1t promoters in transgenic mice show that transcription of the H1t gene is dependent upon the TE promoter element. We purified an 85 kDa protein from rat testis nuclear extracts using the TE1 subelement as an affinity chromatography probe and analysis revealed that the protein was RFX2. The TE1 element is essentially an X-box DNA consensus element and regulatory factor X (RFX) binds specifically to this element. Polyclonal antibodies directed against RFX2 supershift the low mobility testis nuclear protein complex formed in electrophoretic mobility shift assays (EMSA). RFX2 derived from primary spermatocytes, where the transcription factor is relatively abundant, binds with high affinity to the TE1 element. Coexpression of RFX2 together with an H1t promoter/reporter vector activates the H1t promoter in a cultured GC-2spd germinal cell line, but mutation of either the TE1 subelement or the TE2 subelements represses activity. These observations lead us to conclude that the TE1 and TE2 subelements of the testis-specific histone H1t promoter are targets of the transcription factor RFX2 and that this factor plays a key role in activating transcription of the H1t gene in primary spermatocytes. Published 2003 Wiley-Liss, Inc.