Characterization of Transgenic Mice with an Increased Content of Chromosomal Protein HMG-14 in Their Chromatin

Michael Bustin, Pedro J. Alfonso, James M. Pash, Jerrold M. Ward, John D. Gearhart, Roger H. Reeves

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review

14 Scopus citations


Chromosomal protein HMG-14 is a ubiquitous nuclear protein that may modulate the chromatin structure of transcriptionally active genes. To gain insights into the cellular function of the HMG-14 protein, we generated two transgenic mouse lines carrying either two or six copies of the human HMG-14 gene. The transgenic mice express human HMG-14 mRNA and protein in all tissues examined at a level reflecting the increased gene dosage, suggesting that the HMG14 transgene contains all the control regions necessary for regulated gene expression. Expression of the human HMG-14 protein does not alter the expression of the endogenous mouse HMG-14 protein or its close homolog, protein HMG-17. The intracellular distribution of the exogenous human protein is indistinguishable from that of the endogenous mouse protein, resulting in a threefold increase in the level of the chromatin-bound HMG-14. The transgenic mice had a higher incidence of epithelial cysts in their thymus than did control animals. We conclude that the cellular levels of HMG-14/-17 are determined by gene copy number, that the DNA fragment containing the gene and about 1,000 bp flanking its 5′ and 3′ ends contain most of the elements necessary for gene expression, that the upper limits of HMG-14 in chromatin are not stringently regulated, and that a three-fold increase in chromatin-bound protein cause only mild phenotypic changes in the transgenic mice.

Original languageEnglish (US)
Pages (from-to)997-1005
Number of pages9
JournalDNA and Cell Biology
Issue number12
StatePublished - Dec 1995

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • Molecular Biology
  • Genetics
  • Cell Biology


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