Author(s): Maguire HF, Hoeffler JP, Siddiqui A
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Abstract The hepatitis B virus (HBV) X gene product trans-activates viral and cellular genes. The X protein (pX) does not bind independently to nucleic acids. The data presented here demonstrate that pX entered into a protein-protein complex with the cellular transcriptional factors CREB and ATF-2 and altered their DNA binding specificities. Although CREB and ATF-2 alone did not bind to the HBV enhancer element, a pX-CREB or pX-ATF-2 complex did bind to the HBV enhancer. Thus, the ability of pX to interact with cellular factors broadened the DNA binding specificity of these regulatory proteins and provides a mechanism for pX to participate in transcriptional regulation. This strategy of altered binding specificity may modify the repertoire of genes that can be regulated by transcriptional factors during viral infection.
This article was published in Science
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