Background CITED proteins belong to a family of non-DNA-binding transcriptional co-regulators that are characterized by a conserved ED-rich domain at the C-terminus. demonstrated that both gene promoters are activated by gcHIF-1. Further, ChIP assays comparing normal and hypoxic conditions reveal differential in vivo binding of gcHIF-1 to both gene promoters in kidney and liver tissues. HRE-luciferase reporter assays demonstrated that both gcCITED3a and gcCITED3b proteins inhibit gcHIF-1 transcriptional activity, and GST pull-down assays confirmed that both proteins bind specifically to the CH1 domain of the grass carp p300 protein. Conclusion The grass carp gcCITED3a and gcCITED3b genes are differentially expressed and regulated in different fish organs in response to hypoxic stress. This is the first report demonstrating in vivo regulation of two closely-related CITED3 isogenes by HIF-1, as well as CITED3 regulation of HIF-1 transcriptional activity in fish. Overall, our findings suggest 106266-06-2 that unique molecular mechanisms operate through these two gcCITED3 isoforms that likely play an important regulatory role in the hypoxic response in the grass carp. Background Cells and tissues respond to low oxygen levels by stabilizing the HIF-1 transcription factor, which controls the expression of over 100 different genes that are involved in adaptation and survival . These include genes involved in erythropoiesis (e.g. EPO), vasculogenesis (e.g. VEGF), glucose metabolism (e.g. GLUT1 and GLUT4), and fibrogenesis. HIF-1 is a heterodimeric DNA-binding protein composed of an oxygen-sensitive HIF-1 subunit and a constitutively expressed HIF-1 subunit (also known as the aryl hydrocarbon receptor nuclear translocator, or ARNT) . In the presence of oxygen, HIF-1 is hydroxylated by a prolyl hydroxylase . This 106266-06-2 triggers its interaction with the pVHL protein, which targets HIF-1 for degradation by the 26S proteosome . In the absence of oxygen, prolyl hydroxylase activity is inhibited. This results in the stabilization of HIF-1 and the subsequent translocation of the HIF-1 subunit into the nucleus where it binds HIF-1 and forms transcriptionally active HIF-1. HIF-1 regulates gene expression by interacting with sequence-specific hypoxia-responsive Rabbit polyclonal to HAtag elements (HREs) found in either the 5′-flanking, 3′-flanking, or intronic regions of HIF-responsive genes. The HRE was first identified as a 256-bp sequence in the 3′-flanking region of the human EPO gene . The CITED [cAMP-responsive element-binding protein (CBP)/p300-interacting transactivator with glutamic acid/aspartic acid-rich tail] proteins belong to a family of transcriptional cofactors that is characterized by a conserved ED-rich domain at the C-terminus. The biological properties of CITED proteins include modulating a variety of cellular and developmental processes [6,7] and responding to diverse biological  and environmental stimuli [9,10]. To date, four different CITED homologs have been reported in vertebrates. CITED2, which can function as an activator and a repressor depending on the tissue, is the most extensively studied of the four. In the initial description, CITED2 was shown to function as a repressor of hypoxia-inducible factor-1 (HIF-1) through competition for binding to the CH1 domain of CBP/p300 . The LPXL (Leu-Pro-X-Leu) motifs in both CITED2 and HIF-1 interact with overlapping binding sites on the CH1 domain of p300 . CITED2 has been reported to bind this same region with 33-fold greater affinity than HIF-1 . Genetic evidence indicates that loss of CITED2 is associated with increased activation of HIF-1 target genes , supporting the hypothesis that CITED2 is a negative regulator of HIF-1. Conversely, CITED2 functions as a co-activator for several transcription factors, such as AP-2 , 106266-06-2 PPAR-, and PPAR- , by linking them to CBP/p300. Cellular responses to TGF- are largely mediated by the Smad proteins, which serve as both transcription factors and transcriptional co-regulators. CITED2 is an important regulator of TGF- signaling through direct association with Smad2 and Smad3 . Members of the CITED protein family may also play an important role in the regulation of reproductive functions. Studies have shown that CITED2 interacts with the LIM domain of the Lhx2 transcription factor to enhance transcription of the glycoprotein -subunit gene . Furthermore, CITED1 has been shown to bind to the estrogen receptor ER- and enhance the transcription of estrogen-inducible genes such as TGF- . CITED3 is the least studied member of the CITED family. Previous studies have shown that it is highly expressed during the early stages of embryonic development in the mesonephric tubules and eye in the chicken , the.