This study investigated interactions between SRY, the Y chromosome encoded male sex determining factor, and the androgen receptor (AR). Coexpression of AR and SRY caused marked repression of AR transcriptional activity on a series of androgen-responsive reporter genes. Mammalian one- and two-hybrid experiments demonstrated an AR-SRY interaction mediated by the AR DNA binding domain. Precipitations with glutathione S-transferase fusion proteins indicated that AR-SRY interactions were direct and mediated by the AR DNA binding domain and the SRY high mobility group box DNA binding domain. Transient expression of SRY in LNCaP prostate cancer cells repressed expression of an androgen-dependent prostate-specific antigen (PSA) reporter gene and stable SRY expression repressed the endogenous PSA gene. SRY protein expression was increased by proteosome inhibitors and by the androgen-liganded AR in transient and stable transfectants. AR transcriptional activity was also repressed by DAX1, and the effects of SRY and DAX1 on the AR were additive. These findings indicate that interactions between the AR, SRY, and DAX1 contribute to normal male development and function and suggest a general role for protein-protein interactions between high mobility group box proteins and steroid hormone receptors in regulating tissue-specific gene expression.
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