Functional comparison of the upstream regulatory dna sequences of four human epidermal keratin genes

Chuan Kui Jiang, Howard S. Epstein, Mariana Tomic, Irwin M. Freedberg, Miroslav Blumenberg

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review

23 Scopus citations


The promoters of epidermal keratin genes, K5, K6, and K10 were cloned and their functions compared with that of the previously described promoter of the K14 keratin gene in non-epithelial and transformed epithelial cell lines, as well as in primary cultures of cells derived from simple and stratified epithelia. The four promoters were functional only in epithelial cells. Although the promoter for the basal cell-specific, acidic-type K14 gene was active in all epithelial cells tested, its basic-type partner, K5, and the promoter for the hyperproliferation-associated K6 were active only in primary cultures of stratified epithelia. The promoter for the epidermal differentiation-specific K10 keratin gene was active at a low level in primary cultures of stratified epithelial cells on non-epidermal origin. Thus, the K14 gene promoter is functional in all epithelial cells, but the upstream regions of the K5 and K6 keratin genes restrict their expression to stratified epithelia, whereas the epidermal determinants of the K10 gene are not in the proximal upstream sequences.

Original languageEnglish (US)
Pages (from-to)162-167
Number of pages6
JournalJournal of Investigative Dermatology
Issue number2
StatePublished - Feb 1991
Externally publishedYes

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • Biochemistry
  • Molecular Biology
  • Dermatology
  • Cell Biology


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