NF-kappa B: a family of inducible and differentially expressed enhancer-binding proteins in human T cells

Proc Natl Acad Sci U S A. 1990 Dec;87(24):10028-32. doi: 10.1073/pnas.87.24.10028.


A sensitive DNA-protein crosslinking approach has been used to characterize four inducible T-cell proteins (50 kDa, 55 kDa, 75 kDa, and 85 kDa) that specifically bind to kappa B enhancer elements. Partial proteolytic mapping revealed a distinct cleavage pattern for three of these proteins. These polypeptides are sequestered as inactive precursors in the cytosol of unstimulated T cells but can be converted into active forms in vivo by phorbol ester stimulation or in vitro by detergent treatment. The induction of these proteins by phorbol ester results in a strikingly biphasic pattern of nuclear expression with the 55-kDa and 75-kDa species appearing within minutes, whereas the 50-kDa and 85-kDa species appear only several hours after cellular stimulation. These data suggest that NF-kappa B-binding activity may not correspond to a single polypeptide but rather a family of at least four inducible and differentially regulated DNA-binding proteins that are expressed with distinct kinetics in human T lymphocytes.

Publication types

  • Research Support, U.S. Gov't, P.H.S.

MeSH terms

  • Base Sequence
  • Cell Line
  • Cell Nucleus / metabolism
  • Cytosol / metabolism
  • Enhancer Elements, Genetic*
  • Gene Expression / drug effects
  • HeLa Cells / metabolism
  • Humans
  • Molecular Sequence Data
  • Molecular Weight
  • NF-kappa B / biosynthesis
  • NF-kappa B / genetics*
  • Oligonucleotide Probes
  • Peptide Mapping
  • Protein Binding
  • T-Lymphocytes / metabolism*
  • Tetradecanoylphorbol Acetate / pharmacology


  • NF-kappa B
  • Oligonucleotide Probes
  • Tetradecanoylphorbol Acetate