Iyengar S, Ivanov AV, Jin VX, Rauscher FJ, Farnham PJ
TRIM28 (KAP1) is upregulated in many cancers and has been implicated in both transcriptional activation and repression. Using chromatin immunoprecipitation and sequencing, we show that KAP1 binding sites fall into several categories, specifically, the 3' coding exons of zinc finger (ZNF) genes and promoter regions of ZNFs and other genes. The currently accepted model is that KAP1 is recruited to the genome via interaction of its N-terminal RBCC domain with KRAB ZNFs (KRAB domain containing ZNFs). To determine whether the interaction of KAP1 with KRAB ZNFs is the mechanism by which KAP1 is recruited to genomic binding sites, we analyzed stable cell lines that express tagged wild-type and mutant KAP1. Surprisingly, deletion of the RBCC domain abolished KAP1 binding to the 3' exons of ZNF genes but KAP1 binding to promoter regions was unaffected. Using KAP1 knockdown cells, we showed that the genes most responsive to KAP1 were not ZNF genes but instead were either indirect targets or had KAP1 bound 10 to 100 kb from the transcription start site. Therefore, our studies suggest that KAP1 plays a role distinct from transcriptional regulation at the majority of its strongest binding sites.