C/EBPs are a family of transcription factors that play important roles in energy metabolism. Although initially thought to be constitutive regulators of transcription, an increasing amount of evidence indicates that their transactivating capacity within the cell can be modulated by nutrients and hormones. There are several mechanisms whereby this occurs. First, hormones/nutrients are known to directly alter the expression of C/EBPs. Second, hormones/nutrients may cause an alteration in the phosphorylation state of C/EBPs, which can affect their DNA-binding activity or transactivating capacity. Third, C/EBPs can function as accessory factors on gene promoters within a hormone response unit, interacting with other transcription factors to enhance the degree of responsiveness to specific hormones. Given their role in regulating genes involved in a wide variety of metabolic events, advancing our understanding of the molecular mechanism of action of C/EBPs will undoubtedly further our appreciation for the role these transcription factors play in both health and disease.


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  • Article Type: Review Article
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