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Differential response between the p53 ubiquitin-protein ligases Pirh2 and MdM2 following DNA damage in human cancer cells.
Experimental Cell Research (2006)
  • Miguel A. Villalona Calero, M.D.
Pirh2, a recently identified ubiquitin-protein ligase, has been reported to promote p53 degradation. Pirh2 physically interacts with p53 and promotes ubiquitination of p53 independently of MDM2. Like MDM2, Pirh2 is thought to participate in an autoregulatory feedback loop that controls p53 function. We have previously reported that Pirh2 was overexpressed in human and murine lung cancers as compared to uninvolved lung tissue. Pirh2 increase could potentially cause degradation of wildtype p53 and reduce its tumor suppression function in the lung tumor cells. Since Pirh2 has been reported to be transactivated by p53, however, the mechanisms by which a high level of Pirh2 expression is maintained in tumor cells despite low level of wildtype p53 protein are unclear. In order to evaluate p53 involvement in the transactivation of Pirh2, we evaluated Pirh2, MDM2, p53 and p21 expression with Western blot analysis and real time PCR after gamma irradiation or cisplatin DNA damage treatment using human cancer cell lines containing wildtype (A549, MCF-7), mutant (H719) and null (H1299) p53. Surprisingly, Pirh2 expression was not affected by the presence of wildtype p53 in the cancer cells. In contrast, MDM2 was upregulated by wildtype p53 in A549 and MCF-7 cells and was absent from the H1299 and the H719 cells. We conclude that Pirh2 operates in a distinct manner from MDM2 in response to DNA damage in cancer cells. Pirh2 elevation in p53 null cells indicates the existence of additional molecular mechanisms for Pirh2 upregulation and suggests that p53 is not the sole target of Pirh2 ubiquitin ligase activity.
Publication Date
October 15, 2006
Citation Information
Miguel A. Villalona Calero. "Differential response between the p53 ubiquitin-protein ligases Pirh2 and MdM2 following DNA damage in human cancer cells." Experimental Cell Research Vol. 312 Iss. 17 (2006) p. 3370 - 3378
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