High level transcription of the complement regulatory protein CD59 requires an enhancer located in intron 1.
Tone M., Diamond LE., Walsh LA., Tone Y., Thompson SA., Shanahan EM., Logan JS., Waldmann H.
CD59 is a complement regulatory protein and may also act as a signal-transducing molecule. CD59 transgenic mice have been generated using a CD59 minigene (CD59 minigene-1). Although this minigene contained a 4.6-kilobase pair 5'-flanking region from the human CD59 gene as a promoter, the expression levels of the CD59 mRNA were substantially lower than those observed in humans, suggesting that CD59 gene expression might also require other transcriptional regulatory elements such as an enhancer. To investigate the transcriptional regulation of the CD59 gene, we used three cell lines that express CD59 at different levels. We have identified DNase I-hypersensitive sites in intron 1 in HeLa cells, which express CD59 at high levels, but not in Jurkat (intermediate level) or Raji cells (low level). Furthermore, cell line-specific enhancer activity was detected in a fragment containing these DNase I-hypersensitive sites. The CD59 enhancer was mapped to between -1155 and -888 upstream of the 5'-end of exon 2. To investigate the enhancer activity in vivo, a new CD59 minigene was constructed by the addition of the enhancer fragment into CD59 minigene-1. High expressor CD59 transgenic mice were generated using the new minigene.