Human DREF/ZBED1 is a nuclear protein widely expressed in multiple cell types derived from all three primary germ layers

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Abstract

Drosophila DNA replication-related element binding factor (DREF) is a transcription regulatory factor that binds the promoters of many genes involved in replication and cell proliferation and is required for normal cell cycle progression. Human DREF/zinc finger BED domain-containing protein 1 (ZBED1), an orthologue of Drosophila DREF, also has DNA binding activity, but its cellular functions remain largely uncharacterized. Herein, we show that ZBED1 is a chromatin-associated nuclear protein with a wide expression profile in human tissues from all three primary germ layers. For instance, ZBED1 was expressed in mesodermal-derived epithelial cells of the reproductive system and urinary tract, in endodermal-derived epithelial cells throughout the gastrointestinal tract, and in epidermal epithelium from the ectoderm. ZBED1 was also expressed in connective tissue and smooth muscle cells of multiple organs. To investigate whether ZBED1 is implicated in cell proliferation, similar to Drosophila DREF, we compared the tissue distribution of ZBED1 to that of the proliferation marker Ki-67. ZBED1 and Ki-67 were co-expressed in many epithelial tissues, but ZBED1 expression extended widely beyond that of Ki-67-positive cells. In other tissues, ZBED1 expression was more restricted than Ki-67 expression. These results suggest that ZBED1 is not a cell proliferation-associated factor such as Drosophila DREF, and our study adds to the cumulative understanding of the functions of ZBED1 in human cells and tissues.

Original languageEnglish
Article numbere0205461
JournalPLOS ONE
Volume13
Issue number10
Number of pages13
ISSN1932-6203
DOIs
Publication statusPublished - 1. Oct 2018

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