J Cell Biochem 2005 Jan;94(1):202-15
Department of Craniofacial Development, GKT Dental Institute, King's College, Guy's Hospital, London SE1 9RT, United Kingdom.
The bone morphogenetic protein-2 (BMP-2) is a potent secreted factor that promotes osteoblast differentiation during development. Exposure to BMP-2 is sufficient to cause a lasting change in cell fate presumably by activating specific target genes. To identify genes downstream of BMP-2 we treated the murine pluripotent embryonic cell line, C3H10T1/2 that can be induced to form an osteoblastic phenotype, with 100 ng/ml BMP-2 for 24 h. Using suppression subtractive hybridisation we found the novel zinc finger transcription factor, ZNF450 was upregulated. The single-copy ZNF450 gene spans 15.6 kb on chromosome 10B1 and consists of seven exons, the first of which is untranslated. The open reading frame encodes a 710 reside protein. Analysis of the protein sequence reveals a highly conserved amino-terminal BTB/POZ dimerisation domain, an AT-hook motif, and eight C2H2 zinc fingers. Library screening identified a second mRNA isoform encoding a short protein isoform with one zinc finger. Using reverse transcriptase-real time PCR to measure mRNA expression we found that ZNF450, Runx2/Cbfa-1, and Sp7/osterix were induced by BMP-2 after 4 h in C2C12 myoblast cells. Treatment of C2C12 cells with BMP-2 causes a shift from a myoblastic to osteoblastic phenotype. ZNF450 was upregulated three to fivefold after 24 h in C3H10T1/2 cells and required 100 ng/ml BMP-2. Expression of the 3 kb major transcript was highest in liver, testis, and kidney. However, ZNF450 mRNA was found also in a wide range of adult tissues. The consistent induction of ZNF450 by BMP-2 after 4 h in three murine pluripotent cell lines suggests that ZNF450 may play a role in the BMP-2 signalling pathway.