Interchromosomal associations can regulate gene expression, but little is known about the molecular basis of such associations. In response to antigen stimulation, naive Tcells can differentiate into Th1, Th2, and Th17 cells expressing IFN-γ, IL-4, and IL-17, respectively. We previously reported that in naive Tcells, the IFN-γ locus is associated with the Th2 cytokine locus. Here we show that the Th2 locus additionally associates with the IL-17 locus. This association requires a DNase I hypersensitive region (RHS6) at the Th2 locus. RHS6 and the IL-17 promoter both bear Oct-1 binding sites. Deletion of either of these sites or Oct-1 gene impairs the association. Oct-1 and CTCF bind their cognate sitescooperatively, and CTCF deficiency similarly impairs the association. Finally, defects in the association lead to enhanced IL-17 induction. Collectively, our data indicate Th17 lineage differentiation is restrained by the Th2 locus via interchromosomal associations organized by Oct-1 and CTCF.,
Molecular Cell
Biophysical Genomics, Department Cell Biology & Genetics

Kim, L., Esplugues, E., Zorca, C., F. Parisi (Fabio), Kluger, Y., Kim, T. H., … Flavell, R. (2014). Oct-1 Regulates IL-17 Expression by Directing Interchromosomal Associations in Conjunction with CTCF in T Cells. Molecular Cell, 54(1), 56–66. doi:10.1016/j.molcel.2014.02.004