The B-myb gene was identified on the basis of its homology with the protooncogene c-myb, homolog of the avian myeloblastosis virus (AMV) and avian leukemia virus (E26) transforming genes. Several studies using antisense constructs or antisense oligonucleotides as well as overexpression experiments suggest that B-Myb plays an important role in the transition from G1 to S phase of the cell cycle and that B-Myb expression is cell cycle regulated. We have previously demonstrated that the human T cell lymphotropic virus type 1 (HTLV-1) trans-activator Tax is able to repress transcription from c, myb promoter reporter constructs as well as from the endogenous c-myb promoter in human T cells and that this effect is mediated through inhibition of the c-Myb trans-activating functions. Here we report that both HTLV-1 as well as HTLV-2 Tax proteins inhibit c-Myb trans-activation in mouse embryo fibroblasts (MEFs). In addition to c-Myb, B-Myb expression is also markedly downregulated in HTLV-1-transformed cells at both RNA and protein levels. Furthermore, by using a Jurkat T cell line stably transfected with a tax gene driven by a cadmium-inducible promoter (JPX9), we were able to demonstrate that Tax directly represses the endogenous B-myb promoter in T cells. Because c-Myb and B-Myb have been involved in cell cycle progression, our results Suggest that Tax, by repressing both c-Myb and B-Myb endogenous promoters, may bypass their requirement for cell cycle progression in HTLV-1-transformed T cells.
ASJC Scopus subject areas
- Infectious Diseases