Cytokine exposure mediates transcriptional activation of the orphan nuclear receptor Nur77 in hematopoietic cells

Orsola di Martino, Haixia Niu, Gayla Hadwiger, Margaret A. Ferris, John S. Welch

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review

1 Scopus citations


The orphan nuclear receptor Nur77 is an immediate-early response gene that based on tissue and cell context is implicated in a plethora of cellular processes, including proliferation, differentiation, apoptosis, metabolism, and inflammation. Nur77 has a ligand-binding pocket that is obstructed by hydrophobic side groups. Naturally occurring, cell-endogenous ligands have not been identified, and Nur77 transcriptional activity is thought to be regulated through posttranslational modification and modulation of protein levels. To determine whether Nur77 is transcriptionally active in hematopoietic cells in vivo, we used an upstream activating sequence (UAS)-GFP transgenic reporter. We found that Nur77 is transcriptionally inactive in vivo in hematopoietic cells under basal conditions, but that activation occurs following cytokine exposure by G-CSF or IL-3. We also identified a series of serine residues required for cytokine-dependent transactivation of Nur77. Moreover, a kinase inhibitor library screen and proximity labeling-based mass spectrometry identified overlapping kinase pathways that physically interacted with Nur77 and whose inhibition abrogated cytokine-induced activation of Nur77. We determined that transcriptional activation of Nur77 by G-CSF or IL-3 requires functional JAK and mTor signaling since their inhibition leads to Nur77 transcriptional inactivation. Thus, intracellular cytokine signaling networks appear to regulate Nur77 transcriptional activity in mouse hematopoietic cells.

Original languageEnglish
Article number101240
JournalJournal of Biological Chemistry
Issue number5
StatePublished - Nov 1 2021


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