Gene Summary

Gene:MAFG; v-maf avian musculoaponeurotic fibrosarcoma oncogene homolog G
Aliases: hMAF
Summary:Globin gene expression is regulated through nuclear factor erythroid-2 (NFE2) elements located in enhancer-like locus control regions positioned many kb upstream of alpha- and beta-gene clusters (summarized by Blank et al., 1997 [PubMed 9166829]). NFE2 DNA-binding activity consists of a heterodimer containing a ubiquitous small Maf protein (MafF, MIM 604877; MafG; or MafK, MIM 600197) and the tissue-restricted protein p45 NFE2 (MIM 601490). Both subunits are members of the activator protein-1-like superfamily of basic leucine zipper (bZIP) proteins (see MIM 165160).[supplied by OMIM, Mar 2010]
Databases:OMIM, VEGA, HGNC, Ensembl, GeneCard, Gene
Protein:transcription factor MafG
Source:NCBIAccessed: 17 August, 2015


What does this gene/protein do?
Show (11)
Pathways:What pathways are this gene/protein implicaed in?
Show (1)

Cancer Overview

Research Indicators

Publications Per Year (1990-2015)
Graph generated 17 August 2015 using data from PubMed using criteria.

Literature Analysis

Mouse over the terms for more detail; many indicate links which you can click for dedicated pages about the topic.

Tag cloud generated 17 August, 2015 using data from PubMed, MeSH and CancerIndex

Specific Cancers (4)

Data table showing topics related to specific cancers and associated disorders. Scope includes mutations and abnormal protein expression.

Note: list is not exhaustive. Number of papers are based on searches of PubMed (click on topic title for arbitrary criteria used).

Latest Publications: MAFG (cancer-related)

Fang M, Ou J, Hutchinson L, Green MR
The BRAF oncoprotein functions through the transcriptional repressor MAFG to mediate the CpG Island Methylator phenotype.
Mol Cell. 2014; 55(6):904-15 [PubMed] Article available free on PMC after 18/09/2015 Related Publications
Most colorectal cancers (CRCs) containing activated BRAF (BRAF[V600E]) have a CpG island methylator phenotype (CIMP) characterized by aberrant hypermethylation of many genes, including the mismatch repair gene MLH1. MLH1 silencing results in microsatellite instability and a hypermutable phenotype. Through an RNAi screen, here we identify the transcriptional repressor MAFG as the pivotal factor required for MLH1 silencing and CIMP in CRCs containing BRAF(V600E). In BRAF-positive human CRC cell lines and tumors, MAFG is bound at the promoters of MLH1 and other CIMP genes, and recruits a corepressor complex that includes its heterodimeric partner BACH1, the chromatin remodeling factor CHD8, and the DNA methyltransferase DNMT3B, resulting in hypermethylation and transcriptional silencing. BRAF(V600E) increases BRAF/MEK/ERK signaling resulting in phosphorylation and elevated levels of MAFG, which drives DNA binding. Analysis of transcriptionally silenced CIMP genes in KRAS-positive CRCs indicates that different oncoproteins direct the assembly of distinct repressor complexes on common promoters.

Ding X, Yang Y, Han B, et al.
Transcriptomic characterization of hepatocellular carcinoma with CTNNB1 mutation.
PLoS One. 2014; 9(5):e95307 [PubMed] Article available free on PMC after 18/09/2015 Related Publications
PURPOSE: Hepatocellular carcinoma (HCC) is the sixth most common solid tumor worldwide and the third leading cause of cancer-related death. HCC is a particularly serious threat to the Chinese population. Although many molecular alterations are known to be involved in the tumorigenesis of hepatocytes, no systemic survey has examined the somatic mutations in HCC samples from Chinese patients. Our goal was to elucidate somatic mutations in Chinese HCC patients and investigate the possible molecular mechanisms involved in tumorigenesis.
EXPERIMENTAL DESIGN: A total of 110 hepatitis B virus (HBV)-positive HCC samples and 46 HBV-negative HCC samples were genotyped for hot-spot mutations in the CSF1R, CTNNB1, KRAS, BRAF, NRAS, ERBB2, MET, PIK3CA, JAK1, and SMO genes. The transcriptomes of the CTNNB1 mutation-positive HCC samples from the HBV-positive patients (CB+ HCC) were compared to adjacent non-cancerous livers, and significantly altered genes were functionally validated in vitro.
RESULTS: CTNNB1 mutations accounted for the majority of the mutations detected in our study. A slightly higher mutation rate was found in the HBV-positive patients than in their negative counterparts. A distinct pattern of CTNNB1 mutation was detected in these two populations, and drastic changes at the transcriptomic level were detected in the CB+ tumors compared to adjacent non-cancerous livers. Potential tumor suppressors (FoxA3 and Onecut1) and oncogenes (MAFG and SSX1) were functionally validated.
CONCLUSIONS: Our work is the first systemic characterization of oncogenic mutations in HCC samples from Chinese patients. Targeting the Wnt-β-catenin pathway may represent a valid treatment option for Chinese HCC patients. Our work also suggests that targeting ONECUT1, FOXA3, SSX1, and MAFG may be a valid treatment option for CTNNB1 mutation positive HCC patients.

Wu BL, Luo LW, Li CQ, et al.
Comprehensive bioinformation analysis of the mRNA profile of fascin knockdown in esophageal squamous cell carcinoma.
Asian Pac J Cancer Prev. 2013; 14(12):7221-7 [PubMed] Related Publications
BACKGROUND: Fascin, an actin-bundling protein forming actin bundles including filopodia and stress fibers, is overexpressed in multiple human epithelial cancers including esophageal squamous cell carcinoma (ESCC). Previously we conducted a microarray experiment to analyze fascin knockdown by RNAi in ESCC.
METHOD: In this study, the differentially expressed genes from mRNA expression profilomg of fascin knockdown were analyzed by multiple bioinformatics methods for a comprehensive understanding of the role of fascin.
RESULTS: Gene Ontology enrichment found terms associated with cytoskeleton organization, including cell adhesion, actin filament binding and actin cytoskeleton, which might be related to fascin function. Except GO categories, the differentially expressed genes were annotated by 45 functional categories from the Functional Annotation Chart of DAVID. Subpathway analysis showed thirty-nine pathways were disturbed by the differentially expressed genes, providing more detailed information than traditional pathway enrichment analysis. Two subpathways derivated from regulation of the actin cytoskeleton were shown. Promoter analysis results indicated distinguishing sequence patterns and transcription factors in response to the co-expression of downregulated or upregulated differentially expressed genes. MNB1A, c-ETS, GATA2 and Prrx2 potentially regulate the transcription of the downregulated gene set, while Arnt-Ahr, ZNF42, Ubx and TCF11-MafG might co-regulate the upregulated genes.
CONCLUSIONS: This multiple bioinformatic analysis helps provide a comprehensive understanding of the roles of fascin after its knockdown in ESCC.

Martínez-Hernández A, Gutierrez-Malacatt H, Carrillo-Sánchez K, et al.
Small MAF genes variants and chronic myeloid leukemia.
Eur J Haematol. 2014; 92(1):35-41 [PubMed] Related Publications
Chronic myeloid leukemia (CML) is one of the most frequent hematological neoplasia worldwide. The abnormal accumulation of reactive oxygen species may be an important factor in CML development. The transcription factor NRF2 can regulate the transcription of a battery of antioxidant and detoxificant genes after heterodimerizing with small-Maf proteins. Although the participation of NRF2 in the development of chronic degenerative diseases has been thoroughly studied, the role of small-Maf genes has not been documented. We have identified polymorphisms in the three MAF genes (F, G and K) and assessed their association with CML. Over 266 subjects with CML and 399 unrelated healthy donors have been studied. After sequencing each MAF gene by Sanger technology, we found 17 variants in MAFF gene, eight in MAFG and seven in MAFK. In the case-control study, the homozygote genotype CC for the rs9610915 SNP of MAFF was significantly associated with CML. The frequency of the ACC haplotype from MAFK was significantly lower than controls. After stratification by gender, the ACC and GTG haplotypes were associated only with males with CML. These novel data suggest an association between MAFF and MAFG and the development of CML.

Wang X, Chorley BN, Pittman GS, et al.
Genetic variation and antioxidant response gene expression in the bronchial airway epithelium of smokers at risk for lung cancer.
PLoS One. 2010; 5(8):e11934 [PubMed] Article available free on PMC after 18/09/2015 Related Publications
Prior microarray studies of smokers at high risk for lung cancer have demonstrated that heterogeneity in bronchial airway epithelial cell gene expression response to smoking can serve as an early diagnostic biomarker for lung cancer. As a first step in applying functional genomic analysis to population studies, we have examined the relationship between gene expression variation and genetic variation in a central molecular pathway (NRF2-mediated antioxidant response) associated with smoking exposure and lung cancer. We assessed global gene expression in histologically normal airway epithelial cells obtained at bronchoscopy from smokers who developed lung cancer (SC, n = 20), smokers without lung cancer (SNC, n = 24), and never smokers (NS, n = 8). Functional enrichment analysis showed that the NRF2-mediated, antioxidant response element (ARE)-regulated genes, were significantly lower in SC, when compared with expression levels in SNC. Importantly, we found that the expression of MAFG (a binding partner of NRF2) was correlated with the expression of ARE genes, suggesting MAFG levels may limit target gene induction. Bioinformatically we identified single nucleotide polymorphisms (SNPs) in putative ARE genes and to test the impact of genetic variation, we genotyped these putative regulatory SNPs and other tag SNPs in selected NRF2 pathway genes. Sequencing MAFG locus, we identified 30 novel SNPs and two were associated with either gene expression or lung cancer status among smokers. This work demonstrates an analysis approach that integrates bioinformatics pathway and transcription factor binding site analysis with genotype, gene expression and disease status to identify SNPs that may be associated with individual differences in gene expression and/or cancer status in smokers. These polymorphisms might ultimately contribute to lung cancer risk via their effect on the airway gene expression response to tobacco-smoke exposure.

Choi JS, Zheng LT, Ha E, et al.
Comparative genomic hybridization array analysis and real-time PCR reveals genomic copy number alteration for lung adenocarcinomas.
Lung. 2006 Nov-Dec; 184(6):355-62 [PubMed] Related Publications
Genomic alterations in lung cancer tissues have been observed in various studies. To analyze the aberrations in the genome of lung cancer patients, we used array comparative genomic hybridization (array CGH) in 15 lung adenocarcinoma (AdC) tissues. Copy number gains and losses in chromosomal regions were detected and corresponding genes were confirmed by real-time polymerase chain reaction (PCR). As for the results, several frequently altered loci, including gain of 16p (46% of samples), were found, and the most common losses were found in 14q32.33 (26% of samples). High-level DNA amplifications (> 0.8 log(2) ratio) were detected at 1p, 5p, 7p, 9p, 11p, 11q, 12q, 14q, 16p, 17q, 19q, 20p, 21q, and 22q. A subset of genes, gained or lost, was checked for over- or underrepresentation by means of real-time PCR. The degree of fold change was highest in ECGF1 (22q13.33), HOXA9 (7p15.2), MAFG (17q25.3), TSC2 (16p13.3), and ICAM1 (19p13.2) genes and the 16p chromosome terminal region (16p13.3pter). Taken together, these results show that array CGH could be used as a powerful tool for identification of genomic alteration for lung cancer, and the above-mentioned genes may represent potential candidate genes in the study of lung cancer pathogenesis and diagnosis.

Massrieh W, Derjuga A, Blank V
Induction of endogenous Nrf2/small maf heterodimers by arsenic-mediated stress in placental choriocarcinoma cells.
Antioxid Redox Signal. 2006 Jan-Feb; 8(1-2):53-9 [PubMed] Related Publications
Exposure to inorganic arsenic has been associated with various forms of cancer, nervous system pathogenesis, and vascular diseases, as well as reproductive and developmental toxicity. Here, the effect of inorganic arsenic on placental JAR choriocarcinoma cells was assessed. The nuclear protein levels of the CNC transcription factor Nrf2 were strongly induced in the presence of arsenic. Dosage response experiments showed that 0.5 microM of arsenic is sufficient to augment Nrf2 levels. The expression of the Nrf2 dimerization partners MafG and MafK appeared not to be modulated by arsenic, whereas MafF protein levels were slightly increased. Arsenic also induced the binding of endogenous Nrf2/small Maf DNA-binding complexes to a stress response element (StRE) recognition site. In addition, arsenic caused oxidative stress in the choriocarcinoma cell model as evidenced by an increase in intracellular H2O2 levels. Expression of the enzyme heme oxygenase-1 (HO-1), a known Nrf2 target gene, was upregulated by exposure of JAR cells to arsenic. These results suggest that Nrf2/small Maf heterodimers may play an important role in the response to arsenic-mediated stress in placental cells.

Dhakshinamoorthy S, Jaiswal AK
c-Maf negatively regulates ARE-mediated detoxifying enzyme genes expression and anti-oxidant induction.
Oncogene. 2002; 21(34):5301-12 [PubMed] Related Publications
Anti-oxidant response element (ARE) and nuclear factors including Nrf2 and small Maf (MafG and MafK) proteins are known to regulate expression and induction of detoxifying enzyme genes including quinone oxidoreductase1 (NQO1). Nrf2 upregulates and small Maf proteins lacking the transcriptional activation domain down regulates ARE-mediated expression and induction. In this report, we have investigated the role of c-Maf (large Maf) containing the transcriptional activation domain in the regulation of ARE-mediated genes expression. The overexpression of c-Maf in human hepatoblastoma (Hep-G2) cells led to the repression of ARE-mediated NQO1 and GST Ya genes expression and induction in response to tert-butyl hydroquinone (t-BHQ). This was in contrast to the role of c-Maf in the activation of Maf recognition element (MARE) mediated p53 gene expression. Deletion of transcriptional activation domain of c-Maf (ĉ-Maf) led to significant loss of MARE-mediated p53 gene expression but had no effect on the repression of ARE-mediated NQO1 gene expression. The overexpression of MafG in Hep-G2 cells repressed both ARE and MARE-mediated genes expression. The co-expression of c-Maf with MafG rescued the MafG repression of MARE but not ARE-mediated gene expression. Band and super shift assays showed the presence of c-Maf in the ARE-nuclear protein complex. Similar assays with in vitro translated proteins revealed that both c-Maf and ĉ-Maf bound to NQO1 gene ARE as homodimers and heterodimers with small Maf but not as heterodimers with Nrf2. Mutational analysis of the NQO1 gene ARE indicated that core ARE sequence is essential for binding of c-Maf leading to repression of NQO1 gene expression. Northern analysis revealed that c-Maf expression increases 2 h after t-BHQ treatment. It reached a plateau at 4 h after t-BHQ treatment. The results together led to the conclusion that c-Maf negatively regulates ARE-mediated detoxifying enzyme genes expression and induction in response to anti-oxidants.

Woynarowska BAHigdon AL, Muñoz RM, Bushong P, Waters SJ
Changes in prostate-specific antigen (PSA) level correlate with growth inhibition of prostate cancer cells treated in vitro with a novel anticancer drug, irofulven.
Invest New Drugs. 2001; 19(4):283-91 [PubMed] Related Publications
Irofulven (hydroxymethylacylfulvene, HMAF, MGI 114) is a novel agent with alkylating activity and a potent inducer of apoptosis. It is currently undergoing Phase II clinical trials for several tumor types, including hormone-refractory prostate cancer. Reduction of serum prostate-specific antigen (PSA) levels has been proposed as a generally useful endpoint for evaluating the antitumor efficacy of treatments for prostate cancer. However, the utility of PSA as a marker of tumor cell burden could be compromised, if drugs directly affected PSA secretion and/or expression. In these studies, we evaluated the effects of irofulven on PSA protein and mRNA levels during the course of treatment of prostate tumor cells in vitro. The rate of PSA secretion (normalized per equal cell number) by control and drug treated cells was similar, as determined by a solid phase, two-site immunoradiometric assay. Consistent with the lack of effect of irofulven on PSA protein level, the drug does not appear to affect the expression of PSA mRNA (on a per cell basis) as assessed by RT-PCR. Thus, changes in PSA secretion and expression appear to reflect irofulven-induced cell growth inhibition rather than reflecting a direct effect of the drug on PSA. These results suggest that PSA should be a reasonable marker of tumor burden in irofulven-treated prostate cancer patients.

Kelner MJ, McMorris TC, Estes LA, et al.
Efficacy of MGI 114 (HMAF) against the MRP+ metastatic MV522 lung carcinoma xenograft.
Anticancer Drugs. 2000; 11(3):217-24 [PubMed] Related Publications
This study is part of an effort to evaluate efficacy of the novel agent MGI 114 (HMAF) against tumors resistant to conventional chemotherapeutic agents. MGI 114 is a novel semisynthetic anticancer agent currently in chemotherapeutic phase II trials to evaluate activity against various solid tumors. Previous studies indicate MGI 114 was active against human MDR1/gp170+ solid tumor xenografts. Recent evidence suggests overexpression of the MRP protein may also be clinically relevant to development of drug resistance in solid tumors. We evaluated the efficacy of MGI 114 against a human MRP+ lung carcinoma xenograft. Parent MV522 lung carcinoma cells were transfected with a MRP cDNA expression vector and resistant cells selected by exposure to vinblastine (30-fold resistance). Analysis of resistant clones indicated 20- to 40-fold increases in expression of both MRP mRNA and MRP protein. Administration of MGI 114 at the maximum tolerated dose (7 mg/kg, 5 x/week for 3 weeks) to MRP tumor-bearing mice demonstrated this novel agent was active against MRP+ tumors and significantly extended their lifespan (p<0.001). In contrast, other cytotoxic agents had minimal activity against this MRP+ xenograft. These results indicate MGI 114 should retain activity in vivo against MRP+ tumor types. The development of this MRP+ xenograft model, in conjunction with the parent MV522 and MDR1/gp170+ xenograft models, will be useful for screening new classes of agents for activity against multidrug-resistant tumors.

Igarashi K, Itoh K, Hayashi N, et al.
Conditional expression of the ubiquitous transcription factor MafK induces erythroleukemia cell differentiation.
Proc Natl Acad Sci U S A. 1995; 92(16):7445-9 [PubMed] Article available free on PMC after 18/09/2015 Related Publications
Transcription factor NF-E2 activity is thought to be crucial for the transcriptional regulation of many erythroid-specific genes. The three small Maf family proteins (MafF, MafG, and MafK) that are closely related to the c-Maf protooncoprotein constitute half of the NF-E2 activity by forming heterodimers with the large tissue-restricted subunit of NF-E2 called p45. We have established and characterized murine erythroleukemia cells that conditionally overexpress MafK from a metallothionein promoter. The conditional expression of MafK caused accumulation of hemoglobin, an indication of terminal differentiation along the erythroid pathway. Concomitantly, DNA binding activities containing MafK were induced within the MafK-overexpressing cells. These results demonstrate that MafK can promote the erythroid differentiation program in erythroleukemia cells and suggest that the small Maf family proteins are key regulatory molecules for erythroid differentiation.

Disclaimer: This site is for educational purposes only; it can not be used in diagnosis or treatment.

Cite this page: Cotterill SJ. MAFG, Cancer Genetics Web: Accessed:

Creative Commons License
This page in Cancer Genetics Web by Simon Cotterill is licensed under a Creative Commons Attribution-ShareAlike 4.0 International License.
Note: content of abstracts copyright of respective publishers - seek permission where appropriate.

 [Home]    Page last revised: 17 August, 2015     Cancer Genetics Web, Established 1999