In previous studies characterizing intron-dependent expression of the human purine nucleoside phosphorylase-encoding gene (PNP), we identified a putative enhancer sequence in the first intron which was capable of mediating increased cat reporter gene expression in transfected murine NIH 3T3 cells in a position- and orientation-independent manner. In order to further characterize this enhancer activity, the nucleotide sequence was determined for the region of intron 1 to which this activity was originally ascribed. The sequence was analyzed for the presence of binding sites for known transcription factors, but none were identified. A 444-bp downstream portion of the intron-1 sequence enhanced cat expression either in conjunction with a human PNP promoter sequence or with a 105-bp heterologous herpes simplex virus thymidine kinase (TK) promoter. Nested deletions of the downstream intron-1 sequence fused to a TK::cat fusion gene localized the enhancer activity to a 170-bp sequence in intron 1. A 154-bp HgiAI fragment (bp 424 to 577 of intron 1) excised from this region contained enhancer activity which varied directly with the number of fragments inserted upstream from the TK::cat fusion gene. However, inversion of the HgiAI fragment in a PNP abbreviated gene, or relocation of the HgiAI fragment from intron 1 to a position upstream from the PNP promoter, reduced or eliminated PNP expression. The effect of the intron-1 enhancer element on PNP expression is thus maximized in a position- and orientation-dependent manner.
Bibliographical noteFunding Information:
We are grateful to Don E. Habel for excellent technical assistance. This work was supported in part by grants from the National Institutes of Health (A127416)a nd the March of Dimes Birth Defects Foundation to R.S.McI. J.J.J. received a NATO science fellowship and a stipend from the Gerald T. Evans fund, Department of Laboratory Medicine and Pathology, University of Minnesota.
Copyright 2014 Elsevier B.V., All rights reserved.
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