Phenotype of P815 mouse mast cells changes markedly during culture in the peritoneal cavity of syngenic BDF1 mice. The cells, cultured for 1 week in the peritoneal cavity of syngenic BDF1 mice, proliferate and express high levels of L-histidine decarboxylase (HDC) and mouse mast cell protease (MMCP)-6 mRNAs, indicating the ability of P815 cells to differentiate toward mature connective tissue mast cells. Peritoneal fluid aspirated from P815- inoculated BDF1 mouse and added to cultured P815 cells in vitro was also found to induce HDC mRNA expression, suggesting that at least some of the humoral factors in the peritoneal fluid induce HDC mRNA transcription. Among the erythroid transcription factors, P815 cells expressed GATA-2 but not GATA-1 mRNA before and after the intraperitoneal incubation. In contrast, the expression of NF-E2 subunit p45 disappeared, while expression of subunit mafK was markedly reduced after incubation. Cotransfection assays using HDC- luciferase reporter and p45 and/or mark expression constructs showed that NF- E2 affects the transactivation of HDC gene. These results suggest that NF-E2 is also an important transcription factor in mast cell differentiation.
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