Background: MCPIP is a novel CCCH zinc finger protein described as an RNase engaged in the regulation of immune responses. The regulation of expression of the gene coding for MCPIP - ZC3H12A is poorly explored.
Results: Here we report that the proinflammatory cytokine IL-1beta rapidly induces the synthesis of MCPIP in primary monocyte-derived macrophages and HepG2 cells. This up-regulation takes place through the MAP kinase pathway and following activation of the transcription factor Elk-1. Using a ZC3H12A reporter construct we have shown that a ZC3H12A promoter region, stretching from -76 to +60, mediates activation by IL-1beta. This region contains binding sites for Elk-1 and its partner SRF. Chromatin immunoprecipitation analysis confirms in vivo binding of both transcription factors to this region of the ZC3H12A promoter.
Conclusions: We conclude that the transcription factor Elk-1 plays an important role in the activation of ZC3H12A expression in response to IL-1beta stimulation.