The mechanisms which control the production of erythropoietin (Epo) remain enigmatic. Recent data suggest that the half-time of Epo messenger RNA (mRNA) is increased by hypoxia in Hep 3B cells, a human hepatoma line. The post-transcriptional regulation of other rapidly degraded mRNAs is mediated by sequence-specific mRNA binding proteins. In order to determine if Epo mRNA specific binding proteins exist, we probed cytosolic lysates from Hep 3B cells and mouse tissues with radiolabeled Epo RNA. A cytosolic protein that binds specifically to Epo RNA was identified in the Epo-producing, hepatoblastoma Hep 3B cell line by gel mobility shift assay. This protein was identified in both normoxic and hypoxic cells and bound specifically to a 120-base fragment of the 3′-untranslated region (3′-UTR) of Epo mRNA. Binding was competed with unlabeled Epo RNA, but not with granulocyte-macrophage colony-stimulating factor RNA. Ultraviolet light cross-linked Epo RNA-protein complexes migrated as two bands of 70 and 135-140 kD on sodium dodecyl sulfate-polyacrylamide gels. Binding activity was markedly increased in brain and spleen lysates from mice subjected to 24 h of hypoxia. Therefore, the post-transcriptional regulation of Epo expression in response to hypoxia may in part be due to the interaction of Epo RNA with its specific binding protein.
|Original language||English (US)|
|Number of pages||5|
|Journal||Journal of Biological Chemistry|
|Publication status||Published - 1991|
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