ETS-core binding factor: A common composite motif in antigen receptor gene enhancers

Batu Erman, Marta Cortes, Barbara S. Nikolajczyk, Nancy A. Speck, Ranjan Sen

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review

54 Scopus citations


A tripartite domain of the murine immunoglobulin μ heavy-chain enhancer contains the μA and μB elements that bind ETS proteins and the μE3 element that binds leucine zipper-containing basic helix-loop-helix (bHLH-zip) factors. Analysis of the corresponding region of the human μ enhancer revealed high conservation of the μA and μB motifs but a striking absence of the μE3 element. Instead of bHLH-zip proteins, we found that the human enhancer bound core binding factor (CBF) between the μA and μB elements; CBF binding was shown to be a common feature of both murine and human enhancers. Furthermore, mutant enhancers that bound prototypic bHLH-zip proteins but not CBF did not activate transcription in B cells, and conversely, CBF transactivated the murine enhancer in nonlymphoid cells. Taking these data together with the earlier analysis of T-cell-specific enhancers, we propose that ETS-CBF is a common composite element in the regulation of antigen receptor genes. In addition, these studies identify the first B-cell target of CBF, a protein that has been implicated in the development of childhood pre-B-cell leukemias.

Original languageEnglish (US)
Pages (from-to)1322-1330
Number of pages9
JournalMolecular and Cellular Biology
Issue number3
StatePublished - Mar 1998
Externally publishedYes

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • Molecular Biology
  • Genetics
  • Cell Biology


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