Functional interaction between the ZO-1-interacting transcription factor ZONAB/DbpA and the RNA processing factor symplekin Academic Article uri icon


  • Epithelial tight junctions participate in the regulation of gene expression by controlling the activity of transcription factors that can interact with junctional components. One such protein is the Y-box transcription factor ZONAB/DbpA that binds to ZO-1, a component of the junctional plaque. Symplekin, another nuclear protein that can associate with tight junctions, functions in the regulation of polyadenylation and thereby promotes gene expression. Here, we addressed the question of whether these two proteins interact and whether this is of functional relevance. We demonstrate that ZONAB/DbpA and symplekin form a complex in kidney and intestinal epithelial cells that can be immunoprecipitated and that exists in the nucleus. The interaction between ZONAB/DbpA and symplekin can be reconstituted with recombinant proteins. In reporter gene assays in which ZONAB/DbpA functions as a repressor, symplekin functionally interacts with ZONAB/DbpA, indicating that symplekin can also promote transcriptional repression. RNAi experiments indicate that symplekin depletion reduces the nuclear accumulation and the transcriptional activity of ZONAB/DbpA in colon adenocarcinoma cells, resulting in inhibition of proliferation and reduced expression of the ZONAB/DbpA-target gene cyclin D1. Our data thus indicate that symplekin and ZONAB/DbpA cooperate in the regulation of transcription, and that they promote epithelial proliferation and cyclin D1 expression.


  • Kavanagh, E
  • Buchert, M
  • Tsapara, A
  • Choquet, A
  • Balda, MS
  • Hollande, F
  • Matter, K

publication date

  • December 15, 2006

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