DFF, a heterodimeric protein that functions downstream of caspase-3 to trigger DNA fragmentation during apoptosis

Xuesong Liu, Hua Zou, Clive Slaughter, Xiaodong Wang

Research output: Contribution to journalArticle

1565 Scopus citations

Abstract

We have identified and purified from HeLa cytosol a protein that induces DNA fragmentation in coincubated nuclei after it is activated by caspase-3. This protein, designated DNA Fragmentation Factor (DFF), is a heterodimer of 40 kDa and 45 kDa subunits. The amino acid sequence of the 45 kDa subunit, determined from its cDNA sequence, reveals it to be a novel protein. Caspase- 3 cleaves the 45 kDa subunit at two sites to generate an active factor that produces DNA fragmentation without further requirement for caspase-3 or other cytosolic proteins. In cells undergoing apoptosis, the 45 kDa subunit is cleaved in the same pattern as it is cleaved by caspase-3 in vitro. These data delineate a direct signal transduction pathway during apoptosis: caspase-3 to DFF to DNA fragmentation.

Original languageEnglish (US)
Pages (from-to)175-184
Number of pages10
JournalCell
Volume89
Issue number2
DOIs
StatePublished - Apr 18 1997
Externally publishedYes

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • Biochemistry, Genetics and Molecular Biology(all)

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