Thioredoxin nuclear translocation and interaction with redox factor-1 activates the activator protein-1 transcription factor in response to ionizing radiation

S. J. Wei, A. Botero, K. Hirota, C. M. Bradbury, S. Markovina, A. Laszlo, D. R. Spitz, P. C. Goswami, J. Yodoi, D. Gius

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168 Scopus citations

Abstract

Thioredoxin (TRX) is a cytoplasmic, redox-sensitive signaling factor believed to participate in the regulation of nuclear transcription factors mediating cellular responses to environmental stress. Activation of the activator protein (AP)-1 transcription factor is thought to be mediated in part by redox-sensitive interactions between the nuclear signaling protein redox factor-1 (Ref-1) and TRX. In this study, the role of TRX and Ref-1 in the activation of the AP-1 complex was examined in HeLa and Jurkat cell lines exposed to ionizing radiation (IR). After exposure to IR, nuclear levels of immunoreactive TRX increased, accompanied by an increase in AP-1 DNA binding activity. It was shown that a physical interaction between Ref-1 and TRX occurs within the nucleus and is enhanced after exposure to IR. Furthermore, TRX immunoprecipitated from irradiated cells was capable of activating AP-1 DNA binding activity in nonirradiated nuclear extracts. In addition, immunodepletion of Ref-1 from nuclear extracts demonstrated that the increase in AP-1 DNA binding activity after IR was also dependent upon the presence of Ref-1 from irradiated cells. Finally, the ability of both TRX and Ref-1 from irradiated cells to stimulate AP-1 DNA binding in nonirradiated nuclear extracts was abolished by chemical oxidation and restored by chemical reduction. These results indicate that, in response to IR, TRX and Ref-1 undergo changes in redox state that contribute to the activation of AP-1 DNA binding activity. These experiments suggest that a redox-sensitive signaling pathway leading from TRX to Ref-1 to the AP-1 complex participates in the up-regulation of DNA binding activity in response to ionizing radiation.

Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)6688-6695
Number of pages8
JournalCancer research
Volume60
Issue number23
StatePublished - Dec 1 2000

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