Identification of a novel enhancer of CEBPE essential for granulocytic differentiation

Pavithra Shyamsunder*, Mahalakshmi Shanmugasundaram, Anand Mayakonda, Pushkar Dakle, Weoi Woon Teoh, Lin Han, Deepika Kanojia, Mei Chee Lim, Melissa Fullwood, Omer An, Henry Yang, Jizhong Shi, Mohammad Zakir Hossain, Vikas Madan, H. Phillip Koeffler

*Corresponding author for this work

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review

26 Citations (Scopus)


CCAAT/enhancer binding protein (CEBPE) is an essential transcription factor for granulocytic differentiation. Mutations of CEBPE occur in individuals with neutrophil-specific granule deficiency (SGD), which is characterized by defects in neutrophil maturation. Cebpe-knockout mice also exhibit defects in terminal differentiation of granulocytes, a phenotype reminiscent of SGD. Analysis of DNase I hypersensitive sites sequencing data revealed an open chromatin region 6 kb downstream of the transcriptional start site of Cebpe in murine myeloid cells.We identified an interaction between this 16-kb region and the core promoter of Cebpe using circular chromosome conformation capture sequencing (4C-seq). To understand the role of this putative enhancer in transcriptional regulation of Cebpe, we targeted it using catalytically inactive Cas9 fused to Krüppel-associated box (KRAB) domain and observed a significant downregulation of transcript and protein levels of CEBPE in cells expressing guide RNA targeting the 16-kb region. To further investigate the role of this novel enhancer further in myelopoiesis, we generated mice with deletion of this region using CRISPR/Cas9 technology. Germline deletion of the16-kb enhancer resulted in reduced levels of CEBPE and its target genes and caused a severe block in granulocytic differentiation.Wealso identified binding of CEBPAand CEBPE to the16-kb enhancer,which suggests their role in regulating the expression of Cebpe. In summary, we have identified a novel enhancer crucial for regulating expression of Cebpe and required for normal granulocytic differentiation.

Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)2507-2517
Number of pages11
Issue number23
Publication statusPublished - Jun 6 2019
Externally publishedYes

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • Biochemistry
  • Immunology
  • Hematology
  • Cell Biology


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