We have previously shown that DPF2 (requiem/REQ) functions as a linker protein between the SWI/SNF complex and RelB/p52 NF-κB heterodimer and plays important roles in NF-κB transactivation via its noncanonical pathway. Using sensitive 293FT reporter cell clones that had integrated a SWI/ SNF-dependent NF-κB reporter gene, we find in this study that the overexpression of DPF1, DPF2, DPF3a, DPF3b, and PHF10 significantly potentiates the transactivating activity of typical NF-κB dimers. Knockdown analysis using 293FT reporter cells that endogenously express these five proteins at low levels clearly showed that DPF3a and DPF3b, which are produced from the DPF3 gene by alternative splicing, are the most critical for the RelA/p50 NF-κB heterodimer transactivation induced by TNF-α stimulation. Our data further show that this transactivation requires the SWI/SNF complex. DPF3a and DPF3b are additionally shown to interact directly with RelA, p50, and several subunits of the SWI/SNF complex in vitro and to be coimmunoprecipitated with RelA/p50 and the SWI/SNF complex from the nuclear fractions of cells treated with TNF-α. In ChIP experiments, we further found that endogenous DPF3a/b and the SWI/SNF complex are continuously present on HIV-1 LTR, whereas the kinetics of RelA/p50 recruitment after TNF-αtreatment correlate well with the viral transcriptional activation levels. Additionally, re-ChIP experiments showed DPF3a/b and the SWI/SNF complex associate with RelA on the endogenous IL-6 promoter after TNF-α treatment. In conclusion, our present data indicate that by linking RelA/p50 to the SWI/SNF complex, DPF3a/b induces the transactivation of NF-κB target gene promoters in relatively inactive chromatin contexts.
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