Biochemical and Biophysical Research Communications, Vol.313, No.1, 205-211, 2004
Defining an N-terminal activation domain of the orphan nuclear receptor Nurr1
Nurr1 is an orphan nuclear receptor essential for the development of midbrain dopaminergic neurons. Activation of Nurr1 depends on two so-called activation functions (AFs) situated in the N- and C-terminal regions, respectively. The region important for activation within the C-terminal domain has been shown to promote activation in a highly cell-type specific fashion in the absence of added exogenous ligands. In contrast, the region in the N-terminal domain (AF1) has been much less characterized. Here we mutagenized the N-terminal domain of Nurr1 to define essential activation regions. The results identified a short core activation region localized close to the N-terminus of Nurr1. In addition, cell-type specific influences by other signaling pathways were analyzed by mutagenesis of specific conserved phosphorylation sites. The results indicate that mitogen-activated protein kinase activity (MAPK) positively influences Nurr1 AF1-dependent transcriptional activation via a conserved phosphorylation site outside the core activation region. (C) 2003 Elsevier Inc. All rights reserved.