A Proximal B Site in the Il-23 p19 Promoter Is Responsible for RelA- and c-Rel-Dependent Transcription

Mise-Omata, S.; Kuroda, E.; Niikura, J.; Yamashita, U.; Obata, Y.; Doi, T.S.

The Journal of Immunology 179(10): 6596-6603


DOI: 10.4049/jimmunol.179.10.6596
Accession: 068490654

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IL-23 is a heterodimeric cytokine composed of a unique p19 subunit and a common p40 subunit is shared with IL-12. IL-23 promotes the inflammatory response by inducing the expansion of CD4(+) cells producing IL-17. The regulation of p19 gene expression has been less studied than that of p40 subunit expression, which in macrophages is well known to be dependent on NF-kappaB. To clarify the role of NF-kappaB in expression of the p19 gene, we analyzed mRNA levels in NF-kappaB-deficient macrophages. As reported to occur in dendritic cells, p19 expression was dramatically reduced in c-rel-deficient macrophages. Moreover, we found that p19 expression was halved in rela-deficient macrophages, but it was enhanced in p52-deficient macrophages. The p19 promoter contains three putative kappaB sites, located at nt -642 to -632 (kappaB-642), nt -513 to -503 (kappaB-513), and nt -105 to -96 (kappaB-105), between the transcription start site and -937 bp upstream in the p19 promoter region. Although EMSA analysis indicated that both kappaB-105 and kappaB-642, but not kappaB-513, bound to NF-kappaB in vitro, luciferase-based reporter assays showed that the most proximal kappaB site, kappaB-105, was uniquely indispensable to the induction of p19 transcription. Chromatin immunoprecipitation demonstrated in vivo association of RelA, c-Rel, and p50 with kappaB-105 of the p19 promoter. These results provide the evidence that the association of RelA and c-Rel with the proximal kappaB site in the p19 promoter is required to induce of p19 expression.