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Activation of transcription factor NF-kappaB requires ELKS, an IkappaB kinase regulatory subunit.

The nuclear factor-kappa B (NF-kappaB) family of transcription factors plays a seminal role in inflammation, apoptosis, development, and cancer. Modulation of NF-kappaB-mediated gene expression in response to diverse signals is coordinated by the IkappaB kinase (IKK) complex. We identified ELKS, an essential regulatory subunit of the IKK complex. Silencing ELKS expression by RNA interference blocked induced expression of NF-kappaB target genes, including the NF-kappaB inhibitor IkappaBalpha and proinflammatory genes such as cyclo-oxygenase 2 and interleukin 8. These cells were also not protected from apoptosis in response to cytokines. ELKS likely functions by recruiting IkappaBalpha to the IKK complex and thus serves a regulatory function for IKK activation.

Pubmed ID: 15218148


  • Ducut Sigala JL
  • Bottero V
  • Young DB
  • Shevchenko A
  • Mercurio F
  • Verma IM


Science (New York, N.Y.)

Publication Data

June 25, 2004

Associated Grants


Mesh Terms

  • Adaptor Proteins, Signal Transducing
  • Animals
  • Apoptosis
  • Carrier Proteins
  • Cell Line
  • Cyclooxygenase 2
  • Gene Expression
  • Genes, Reporter
  • HeLa Cells
  • Humans
  • I-kappa B Kinase
  • I-kappa B Proteins
  • Interleukin-1
  • Interleukin-8
  • Isoenzymes
  • Membrane Proteins
  • Mice
  • Mice, Knockout
  • Mitogen-Activated Protein Kinases
  • Mutation
  • NF-kappa B
  • Nerve Tissue Proteins
  • Phosphorylation
  • Precipitin Tests
  • Prostaglandin-Endoperoxide Synthases
  • Protein-Serine-Threonine Kinases
  • RNA Interference
  • Tumor Necrosis Factor-alpha