Corticosteroid receptors adopt distinct cyclical transcriptional signatures

FASEB J. 2018 Oct;32(10):5626-5639. doi: 10.1096/fj.201800391RR. Epub 2018 May 7.


Mineralocorticoid receptors (MRs) and glucocorticoid receptors (GRs) are two closely related hormone-activated transcription factors that regulate major pathophysiologic functions. High homology between these receptors accounts for the crossbinding of their corresponding ligands, MR being activated by both aldosterone and cortisol and GR essentially activated by cortisol. Their coexpression and ability to bind similar DNA motifs highlight the need to investigate their respective contributions to overall corticosteroid signaling. Here, we decipher the transcriptional regulatory mechanisms that underlie selective effects of MRs and GRs on shared genomic targets in a human renal cellular model. Kinetic, serial, and sequential chromatin immunoprecipitation approaches were performed on the period circadian protein 1 ( PER1) target gene, providing evidence that both receptors dynamically and cyclically interact at the same target promoter in a specific and distinct transcriptional signature. During this process, both receptors regulate PER1 gene by binding as homo- or heterodimers to the same promoter region. Our results suggest a novel level of MR-GR target gene regulation, which should be considered for a better and integrated understanding of corticosteroid-related pathophysiology.-Le Billan, F., Amazit, L., Bleakley, K., Xue, Q.-Y., Pussard, E., Lhadj, C., Kolkhof, P., Viengchareun, S., Fagart, J., Lombès, M. Corticosteroid receptors adopt distinct cyclical transcriptional signatures.

Keywords: aldosterone signaling; chromatin immunoprecipitation; cortisol; kinetics; nuclear receptors.

Publication types

  • Research Support, Non-U.S. Gov't

MeSH terms

  • Cell Line
  • Gene Expression Regulation*
  • Humans
  • Nucleotide Motifs*
  • Period Circadian Proteins / biosynthesis
  • Period Circadian Proteins / genetics
  • Receptors, Glucocorticoid / genetics
  • Receptors, Glucocorticoid / metabolism*
  • Receptors, Mineralocorticoid / genetics
  • Receptors, Mineralocorticoid / metabolism*
  • Response Elements*
  • Signal Transduction*
  • Transcription, Genetic*


  • Per1 protein, mouse
  • Period Circadian Proteins
  • Receptors, Glucocorticoid
  • Receptors, Mineralocorticoid