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Regulation of MCP-1 chemokine transcription by p53


Abstract Background Our previous studies showed that the expression of the monocyte-chemoattractant protein (MCP)-1, a chemokine, which triggers the infiltration and activation of cells of the monocyte-macrophage lineage, is abrogated in human papillomavirus (HPV)-positive premalignant and malignant cells. In silico analysis of the MCP-1 upstream region proposed a putative p53 binding side about 2.5 kb upstream of the transcriptional start. The aim of this study is to monitor a physiological role of p53 in this process. Results The proposed p53 binding side could be confirmed in vitro by electrophoretic-mobility-shift assays and in vivo by chromatin immunoprecipitation. Moreover, the availability of p53 is apparently important for chemokine regulation, since TNF-α can induce MCP-1 only in human keratinocytes expressing the viral oncoprotein E7, but not in HPV16 E6 positive cells, where p53 becomes degraded. A general physiological role of p53 in MCP-1 regulation was further substantiated in HPV-negative cells harboring a temperature-sensitive mutant of p53 and in Li-Fraumeni cells, carrying a germ-line mutation of p53. In both cases, non-functional p53 leads to diminished MCP-1 transcription upon TNF-α treatment. In addition, siRNA directed against p53 decreased MCP-1 transcription after TNF-α addition, directly confirming a crosstalk between p53 and MCP-1. Conclusion These data support the concept that p53 inactivation during carcinogenesis also affects immune surveillance by interfering with chemokine expression and in turn communication with cells of the immunological compartment.

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