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Keywords:

  • acetylcholinesterase;
  • Elav gene;
  • HuD gene;
  • mRNA stability;
  • thyroid hormone

Abstract

Many genes governed by thyroid hormone (T3) lack binding sites for its receptor (TR) and are thought to be post-transcriptionally regulated by T3. Here we demonstrate that the HuD gene, which encodes a neurone-specific protein that binds to mRNA and modulates its stability, is regulated by T3. HuD RNA and protein expression were strongly up-regulated in specific areas of the hypothyroid rat brain, and reduced by T3 in rat PC12 and mouse N2a cells containing appropriate TR levels. Furthermore, T3 inhibited the transcription of HuD in run-on assays. Finally, HuD protein bound with high affinity to two sequences in acetylcholinesterase mRNA, and ectopic HuD expression increased its abundance in N2a cells. This is the first report of a gene encoding an mRNA stability regulator that is under T3 control. The results suggest that HuD may mediate some T3 effects by altering the half-life of mRNAs for acetylcholinesterase and other genes.