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Biological Chemistry

Editor-in-Chief: Brüne, Bernhard

Editorial Board Member: Buchner, Johannes / Lei, Ming / Ludwig, Stephan / Sies, Helmut / Turk, Boris / Wittinghofer, Alfred

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Transcriptional Repression Mediated by the KRAB Domain of the Human C2H2 Zinc Finger Protein Kox1/ZNF10 Does Not Require Histone Deacetylation

Peter Lorenz / Dirk Koczan / Hans-Jürgen Thiesen
Published Online: 2005-06-01 | DOI: https://doi.org/10.1515/BC.2001.075


The KRAB domain of human Kox1, a member of the KRAB C2H2 zinc finger family, confers strong transcriptional repressor activities even to remote promoter positions. Here, HDAC inhibitors were used to demonstrate that histone deacetylation is not required for mediating transcriptional repression of KRAB zinc finger proteins. Two reporter systems with either stably integrated or transiently transfected templates, both under control of strong viral promoters, were analyzed. Under all circumstances, HDAC inhibition did not alter the repression potential of the KRAB domain. In case of the stably integrated luciferase reporter gene system, neither expression levels of the KRAB fusion protein nor complex formation with its putative corepressor TIF1β were significantly changed. Furthermore, the TIF1β/KRAB complex was devoid of mSin3A and HDAC1. In the transient transfection system, the transcriptional repression induced by TIF1β and HP1α was not diminished by HDAC inhibitors, whereas the repressory activity of TIF1α was significantly affected. Thus, KRAB, TIF1β and HP1α are likely to be functionally linked. In conclusion, HDAC activity is not essential for the strong transcriptional repressor activity mediated by the KRAB domain of Kox1 in particular and, presumably, by KRAB domains in general. This feature might be helpful in identifying and characterizing target genes under the control of KRAB zinc finger proteins.

Published Online: 2005-06-01

Published in Print: 2001-04-27

Citation Information: Biological Chemistry. Volume 382, Issue 4, Pages 637–644, ISSN (Print) 1431-6730, DOI: https://doi.org/10.1515/BC.2001.075, June 2005

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