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The T protein encoded by Brachyury is a tissue-specific transcription factor.

Kispert A., Koschorz B., Herrmann B.G.

The mouse Brachyury (T) gene is required for differentiation of the notochord and formation of mesoderm during posterior development. Homozygous embryos lacking T activity do not develop a trunk and tail and die in utero. The T gene is specifically expressed in notochord and early mesoderm cells in the embryo. recent data have demonstrated that the T protein is localized in the cell nucleus and specifically binds to a palindrome of 20 bp (the T site) in vitro. We show that the T protein activates expression of a reporter gene in HeLa cells through binding to the T site. Thus T is a novel tissue-specific transcription factor. It consists of a large N-terminal DNA binding domain (amino acids 1-229) and two pairs of transactivation and repression domains in the C-terminal protein half. T can also transactivate transcription through variously oriented and spaced T sites, a fact that may be relevant in the search for genes controlled by T protein and important in mesoderm development.

EMBO J. 14:4763-4772(1995) [PubMed] [Europe PMC]

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