The Journal of biological chemistry

ATF-7, a novel bZIP protein, interacts with the PRL-1 protein-tyrosine phosphatase.

PMID 11278933


We have identified a novel basic leucine zipper (bZIP) protein, designated ATF-7, that physically interacts with the PRL-1 protein-tyrosine phosphatase (PTPase). PRL-1 is a predominantly nuclear, farnesylated PTPase that has been linked to the control of cellular growth and differentiation. This interaction was initially found using the yeast two-hybrid system. ATF-7 is most closely related to members of the ATF/CREB family of bZIP proteins, with highest homology to ATF-4. ATF-7 homodimers can bind specifically to CRE elements. ATF-7 is expressed in a number of different tissues and is expressed in association with differentiation in the Caco-2 cell model of intestinal differentiation. We have confirmed the PRL-1.ATF-7 interaction and mapped the regions of ATF-7 and PRL-1 important for interaction to ATF-7's bZIP region and PRL-1's phosphatase domain. Finally, we have determined that PRL-1 is able to dephosphorylate ATF-7 in vitro. Further insight into ATF-7's precise cellular roles, transcriptional function, and downstream targets are likely be of importance in understanding the mechanisms underlying the complex processes of maintenance, differentiation, and turnover of epithelial tissues.