Mechanisms of activation and repression by the alternative splicing factors RBFOX1/2

Shuying Sun, Zuo Zhang, Oliver Fregoso, Adrian R. Krainer

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review

52 Scopus citations


RBFOX1 and RBFOX2 are alternative splicing factors that are predominantly expressed in the brain and skeletal muscle. They specifically bind the RNA element UGCAUG, and regulate alternative splicing positively or negatively in a position-dependent manner. The molecular basis for the position dependence of these and other splicing factors on alternative splicing of their targets is not known. We explored the mechanisms of RBFOX splicing activation and repression using an MS2-tethering assay. We found that the Ala/Tyr/Gly-rich C-terminal domain is sufficient for exon activation when tethered to the downstream intron, whereas both the C-terminal domain and the central RRM are required for exon repression when tethered to the upstream intron. Using immunoprecipitation and mass spectrometry, we identified hnRNP H1, RALY, and TFG as proteins that specifically interact with the C-terminal domain of RBFOX1 and RBFOX2. RNA interference experiments showed that hnRNP H1 and TFG modulate the splicing activity of RBFOX1/2, whereas RALY had no effect. However, TFG is localized in the cytoplasm, and likely modulates alternative splicing indirectly. Published by Cold Spring Harbor Laboratory Press.

Original languageEnglish (US)
Pages (from-to)274-283
Number of pages10
Issue number2
StatePublished - Feb 2012
Externally publishedYes


  • Alternative splicing
  • TFG
  • hnRNP H1

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • Molecular Biology


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