Al-Assar, O., Robson, T., McKeown, S. R., Gardin, I., Wilson, G. D. and Hirst, D. G. Regulation of FOS by Different Compartmental Stresses Induced by Low Levels of Ionizing Radiation.
We irradiated different cellular compartments and measured changes in expression of the FOS gene at the mRNA and protein levels. [3H]Thymidine and tritiated water were used to irradiate the nucleus and the whole cell, respectively. 125I-Concanavalin A binding was used to irradiate the cell membrane differentially. Changes in FOS mRNA and protein levels were measured using semi-quantitative RT-PCR and SDS-PAGE Western blotting, respectively. Irradiation of the nucleus or the whole cell at a dose rate of 0.075 Gy/h caused no change in the level of FOS mRNA expression, but modestly (1.5-fold) induced FOS protein after 0.5 h. Irradiation of the nucleus at a dose rate of 0.43 Gy/h induced FOS mRNA by 1.5-fold after 0.5 h, but there was no significant effect after whole-cell irradiation. FOS protein was transiently induced 2.5-fold above control levels 0.5 h after a 0.43-Gy/h exposure of the nucleus or the whole cell. Irradiation of the cell membrane at a dose rate of 1.8 Gy/h for up to 2 h caused no change in the levels of expression of FOS mRNA or protein, but a dose rate of 6.8 Gy/h transiently increased the level of FOS mRNA 3-fold after 0.5 h. These data demonstrate the complexity of the cellular response to radiation-induced damage at low doses. The lack of quantitative agreement between the transcript and protein levels for FOS suggests a role for post-transcriptional regulation.