Synergism between p68 RNA helicase and the transcriptional coactivators CBP and p300

Oncogene. 2003 Jan 9;22(1):151-6. doi: 10.1038/sj.onc.1206067.


p68 RNA helicase has been implicated in a variety of processes, including rearrangement of RNA secondary structures, RNA splicing, gene transcription and tumor development, yet its mechanisms of action are not well understood. In this study, we show that p68 is predominantly localized to the cell nucleus, where it partially colocalizes with the transcriptional coactivator p300. Accordingly, p68 and p300, or the paralogous CREB-binding protein (CBP), coimmunoprecipitate. Similarly, p68 and RNA polymerase II (Pol II) are able to interact in vivo. GST pull-down assays confirmed these interactions in vitro, demonstrating that p68 can interact with several domains of CBP, while CBP/p300 bind to amino acids 176-388 of p68 and RNA Pol II binds to the N-terminal 80 amino acids of p68. Furthermore, p68 stimulates transcription mediated by the C-terminal transactivation domain of CBP. p68 is also able to stimulate TPA oncogene responsive unit (TORU) promoter activity, and p300 acts in synergy with p68. On the other hand, suppression of CBP/p300 function by the adenoviral protein E1A abolishes TORU promoter activation by p68. Altogether, our results suggest the existence of a multiprotein complex in which p68 RNA helicase, CBP/p300 and RNA Pol II jointly promote gene expression.

Publication types

  • Research Support, Non-U.S. Gov't

MeSH terms

  • Cell Line
  • DEAD-box RNA Helicases
  • Humans
  • Nuclear Proteins / metabolism*
  • Protein Binding
  • Protein Kinases / metabolism*
  • RNA Helicases / metabolism*
  • Trans-Activators / metabolism*


  • Nuclear Proteins
  • Trans-Activators
  • Protein Kinases
  • Ddx5 protein, human
  • DEAD-box RNA Helicases
  • RNA Helicases