Exon B of human surfactant protein A2 mRNA, alone or within its surrounding sequences, interacts with 14-3-3; role of cis-elements and secondary structure

Georgios T. Noutsios, Patricia Silveyra, Faizah Bhatti, Joanna Floros

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6 Scopus citations


Human surfactant protein A, an innate immunity molecule, is encoded by two genes: SFTPA1 (SP-A1) and SFTPA2 (SP-A2). The 5′ untranslated (5′UTR) splice variant of SP-A2 (ABD), but not of SP-A1 (AD), contains exon B (eB), which is an enhancer for transcription and translation. We investigated whether eB contains cis-regulatory elements that bind trans-acting factors in a sequence-specific manner as well as the role of the eB mRNA secondary structure. Binding of cytoplasmic NCI-H441 proteins to wild-type eB, eB mutant, AD, and ABD 5′UTR mRNAs were studied by RNA electromobility shift assays (REMSAs). The bound proteins were identified by mass spectroscopy and specific antibodies (Abs). We found that 1) proteins bind eB mRNA in a sequence-specific manner, with two cis-elements identified within eB to be important; 2) eB secondary structure is necessary for binding; 3) mass spectroscopy and specific Abs in REMSAs identified 14-3-3 proteins to bind (directly or indirectly) eB and the natural SP-A2 (ABD) splice variant but not the SP-A1 (AD) splice variant; 4) other ribosomal and cytoskeletal proteins, and translation factors, are also present in the eB mRNA-protein complex; 5) knockdown of 14-3-3 β/α isoform resulted in a downregulation of SP-A2 expression. In conclusion, proteins including the 14-3-3 family bind two cis-elements within eB of hSP-A2 mRNA in a sequence- and secondary structure-specific manner. Differential regulation of SP-A1 and SP-A2 is mediated by the 14-3-3 protein family as well as by a number of other proteins that bind UTRs with or without eB mRNA.

Original languageEnglish (US)
Pages (from-to)L722-L735
JournalAmerican Journal of Physiology - Lung Cellular and Molecular Physiology
Issue number11
StatePublished - Jun 11 2013



  • 14-3-3 family of proteins
  • 5' untranslated regions
  • Electromobility shift assays
  • Trans-acting factors
  • Translation

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • Physiology
  • Pulmonary and Respiratory Medicine
  • Physiology (medical)
  • Cell Biology

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