SciCombinator

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Concept: Selective glucocorticoid receptor agonist

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A newly discovered negative glucocorticoid response element (nGRE) mediates DNA-dependent transrepression by the glucocorticoid receptor (GR) across the genome and has a major role in immunosuppressive therapy. The nGRE differs dramatically from activating response elements, and the mechanism driving GR binding and transrepression is unknown. To unravel the mechanism of nGRE-mediated transrepression by the GR, we characterized the interaction between GR and an nGRE in the thymic stromal lymphopoietin (TSLP) promoter. We show using structural and mechanistic approaches that nGRE binding is a new mode of sequence recognition by human GR and that nGREs prevent receptor dimerization through a unique GR-binding orientation and strong negative cooperativity, ensuring the presence of monomeric GR at repressive elements.

Concepts: Immune system, Transcription factor, Nuclear receptor, Glucocorticoid receptor, Selective glucocorticoid receptor agonist, Response element, Hormone response element, Transrepression

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Chronic stress or prolonged administration of glucocorticoids suppresses proliferation and/or survival of newborn cells in adult rat dentate gyrus. Earlier we showed that administration of the glucocorticoid receptor antagonist mifepristone during the final 4 days of a 21 days period of corticosterone treatment fully normalized the number of newborn cells. Here we aimed to better understand how mifepristone achieves this effect and questioned whether an even shorter (single day) mifepristone treatment (instead of 4 days) also suffices to normalize neurogenesis.

Concepts: Receptor, Cortisol, Dentate gyrus, Neurogenesis, Receptor antagonist, Entorhinal cortex, Glucocorticoid receptor, Selective glucocorticoid receptor agonist