Transcriptional activation mediated by binding of a plant GATA-type zinc finger protein AGP1 to the AG-motif (AGATCCAA) of the wound-inducible Myb gene NtMyb2


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NtMyb2 is a regulator of the tobacco retrotransposon Tto1 and the defense-related gene phenylalanine ammonia lyase (PAL), which are induced by various stress stimuli such as wounding or elicitor treatment. NtMyb2 is also induced by wounding or elicitor treatment and is regulated at the transcriptional level. In this study, mutational analysis of the promoter of NtMyb2 and gain-of-function analysis in vivo showed that the sequence AGATCCAA, named the AG-motif, is a cis-element sufficient to confer responsiveness to wounding and elicitor treatment. Furthermore, by using the south-western method, we cloned cDNAs encoding a GATA-type zinc finger protein, which can specifically bind to the AG-motif, named AG-motif binding Protein (AGP1). Domain analysis revealed that not only the GATA-type zinc finger region but also the downstream His2 motif of AGP1 is required for binding activity, showing that the AGP has a novel GATA-type zinc finger domain. AGP1 can activate expression from promoters containing the AG-motif in tobacco protoplasts, indicating that AGP1 is a positive regulator of NtMyb2. We also found that the AGP1 binding activity is highly enhanced by adenine methylation of the AG-motif by bacterial dam methylase.