Identification of DNA response elements regulating expression of CCAAT/enhancer-binding protein (C/EBP) β and δ and MAP kinase-interacting kinases during early adipogenesis

James E. Merrett, Tao Bo, Peter J. Psaltis, Christopher G. Proud

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review

18 Citations (Scopus)


Given the high and increasing prevalence of obesity and associated disorders, such as type-2 diabetes, it is important to understand the mechanisms that regulate lipid storage and the differentiation of fat cells, a process termed adipogenesis. Using the well-established mouse 3T3-L1 in vitro model of adipogenesis, we refine how the induction of two key adipogenic transcription factors, CCAAT/enhancer-binding proteins (C/EBPs) β and δ are regulated during early adipogenesis. We identify, in the gene promoters of Cebpb and Cebpd, the DNA response elements responsible for binding transcription factors that are activated by cAMP or glucocorticoids. We also show that mitogen-activated protein kinase (MAPK)-interacting kinase 2 (MNK2; Mknk2), which plays a distinct role in diet-induced obesity, is induced during early adipogenesis and identify the functional DNA response elements responsible for regulating its expression. Mknk2 expression is maintained in differentiated 3T3-L1 adipocytes and is expressed at high levels across a range of mouse adipose tissue depots. Together, these new insights help to clarify the transcriptional programme of early adipogenesis and identify Mknk2 as one of potentially many genes up-regulated during adipogenesis.

Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)427-442
Number of pages16
Issue number1
Publication statusPublished or Issued - 2020


  • Adipogenesis
  • CCAAT/enhancer‐binding protein (C/EBP)
  • MAPK-interacting kinase (MNK)
  • adipocyte
  • cAMP response element‐binding protein (CREB)
  • cyclic AMP (cAMP)
  • glucocorticoid
  • glucocorticoid receptor

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • Histology
  • Cell Biology

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