Krüppel associated box
|Krüppel Associated Box|
The Krüppel associated box (KRAB) domain is a category of transcriptional repression domains present in approximately 400 human zinc finger protein-based transcription factors (KRAB zinc finger proteins). The KRAB domain typically consists of about 75 amino acid residues, while the minimal repression module is approximately 45 amino acid residues. It is predicted to function through protein-protein interactions via two amphipathic helices. The most prominent interacting protein is called TRIM28 initially visualized as SMP1, cloned as KAP1 and TIF1-beta. Substitutions for the conserved residues abolish repression.
Over 10 independently encoded KRAB domains have been shown to be effective repressors of transcription, suggesting this activity to be a common property of the domain.
The KRAB domain had initially been identified in 1988 as a periodic array of leucine residues separated by six amino acids 5’ to the zinc finger region of KOX1/ZNF10 coined heptad repeat of leucines (also known as a leucine zipper) . Later, this domain was named in association with the C2H2-Zinc finger proteins Krüppel associated box (KRAB). The KRAB domain is confined to genomes from tetrapod organisms. The KRAB containing C2H2-ZNF genes constitute the largest sub-family of zinc finger genes. More than half of the C2H2-ZNF genes are associated with a KRAB domain in the human genome. They are more prone to clustering and are found in large clusters on the human genome.
The KRAB domain presents one of the strongest repressors in the human genome. Once the KRAB domain was fused to the tetracycline repressor (TetR), the TetR-KRAB fusion proteins were the first engineered drug-inducible repressor that worked in mammalian cells.
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