DNA-binding domain of thyroid hormone receptors (TRs) is composed of two C4-type zinc fingers
DNA-binding domain of thyroid hormone receptors (TRs) is composed of two C4-type zinc fingers. Each zinc finger contains a group of four Cys residues which co-ordinates a single zinc atom. TR interacts with the thyroid response element, which is a DNA site with direct repeats of the consensus sequence 5'-AGGTCA-3' separated by one to five base pairs, upstream of target genes and modulates the rate of transcriptional initiation. Thyroid hormone receptor (TR) mediates the actions of thyroid hormones, which play critical roles in growth, development, and homeostasis in mammals. They regulate overall metabolic rate, cholesterol and triglyceride levels, and heart rate, and affect mood. TRs are expressed from two separate genes (alpha and beta) in human and each gene generates two isoforms of the receptor through differential promoter usage or splicing. TRalpha functions in the heart to regulate heart rate and rhythm and TRbeta is active in the liver and other tissues. The unliganded TRs function as transcription repressors, by binding to thyroid hormone response elements (TRE) predominantly as homodimers, or as heterodimers with retinoid X-receptors (RXR), and being associated with a complex of proteins containing corepressor proteins. Ligand binding promotes corepressor dissociation and binding of a coactivator to activate transcription. Like other members of the nuclear receptor (NR) superfamily of ligand-activated transcription factors, TR has a central well conserved DNA binding domain (DBD), a variable N-terminal domain, a flexible hinge and a C-terminal ligand binding domain (LBD).