Ah receptor, a novel ligand-activated transcription factor

Kazuhiro Sogawa, Yoshiaki Fujii-Kuriyama

    Research output: Contribution to journalReview articlepeer-review

    175 Citations (Scopus)


    The aryl hydrocarbon receptor (AhR) is widely distributed in vertebrates and is known to be involved in metabolism of xenobiotics including man-made chemicals, most of which act as a ligand for the receptor, although no endogenous ligand has yet been known. Upon binding a ligand, the receptor is activated to translocate to the nuclei, and during the nuclear translocation process, it is dissociated from the 90 kDa heat shock protein (Hsp90) to form a heterodimer with Arnt (Ah receptor nuclear translocator). The heterodimer complex binds a DNA response element termed xenobiotic responsive element (XRE) localized upstream of the target genes of many drug-metabolizing enzymes including cytochrome P4501A1 and glutathione S-transferase to activate their transcription. Recent cDNA cloning has revealed that the AhR, like Arnt, possesses characteristic structural motifs of basic helix-loop-helix and PAS domains responsible for DNA recognition, heterodimerization, and ligand binding, and functions as a novel receptor-type transcription factor.

    Original languageEnglish
    Pages (from-to)1075-1079
    Number of pages5
    JournalJournal of biochemistry
    Issue number6
    Publication statusPublished - 1997 Dec


    • Carcinogenesis
    • PAS domain
    • Transcription factor
    • Xenobiotics
    • bHLH domain

    ASJC Scopus subject areas

    • Biochemistry
    • Molecular Biology


    Dive into the research topics of 'Ah receptor, a novel ligand-activated transcription factor'. Together they form a unique fingerprint.

    Cite this