HOX4 genes encode transcription factors with potential auto- and cross-regulatory capacities

EMBO J. 1991 Dec;10(13):4177-87.


We have looked for the binding of several HOX4 complex homeoproteins in the genomic region containing the HOX4C promoter, between the human HOX4C and HOX4D genes. The HOX4C, HOX4D and Hox-4.3 homeoproteins bind to a phylogenetically highly conserved DNA fragment, which is located in the proximal part of this intergenic region and contains multiple binding sites for these HOX4 proteins. Using cotransfection experiments, we show that this endogenous DNA sequence can mediate transactivation by the HOX4D and HOX4C proteins and that this effect requires the presence of TAAT-related binding sites. The Hox-4.3 protein, in contrast, is unable to activate and can repress the activation observed with the two other proteins. These results show that the HOX4D and HOX4C genes are genuine sequence-specific transcription factors and suggest that, as in Drosophila, cross-regulatory interactions between these genes might be essential for their proper expression.

Publication types

  • Research Support, Non-U.S. Gov't

MeSH terms

  • 3T3 Cells
  • Amino Acid Sequence
  • Animals
  • Base Sequence
  • Binding Sites
  • DNA / genetics
  • DNA Fingerprinting
  • DNA-Binding Proteins / genetics*
  • DNA-Binding Proteins / metabolism
  • Gene Expression Regulation*
  • Homeodomain Proteins
  • Humans
  • Mice
  • Molecular Sequence Data
  • Open Reading Frames
  • Promoter Regions, Genetic
  • Protein Biosynthesis
  • Restriction Mapping
  • Transcription Factors / genetics*
  • Transcription Factors / metabolism
  • Transfection


  • DNA-Binding Proteins
  • Homeodomain Proteins
  • Hoxd4 protein, mouse
  • Transcription Factors
  • HOXD10 protein, human
  • DNA

Associated data

  • GENBANK/M62513
  • GENBANK/M62514
  • GENBANK/M62515
  • GENBANK/S65080
  • GENBANK/S65083
  • GENBANK/S72588
  • GENBANK/S72593
  • GENBANK/S72609
  • GENBANK/X59372
  • GENBANK/X59373