Epstein-Barr virus-encoded LMP1 regulates epithelial cell motility and invasion via the ERK-MAPK pathway

Christopher Dawson, Louise Laverick, Mhairi Morris, G Tramoutanis, Lawrence Young

Research output: Contribution to journalArticle

74 Citations (Scopus)


The Epstein-Barr virus (EBV) latent membrane protein 1 (LMP1) is an oncogenic protein which has previously been shown to engage the NF-kappaB, stress-activated MAP kinase, phosphatidylinositol 3-kinase (PI 3-kinase), and extracellular-regulated kinase (ERK)-MAPK pathways. In this study, we demonstrate that LMP1 activates ERK-MAPK in epithelial cells via the canonical Raf-MEK-ERK-MAPK pathway but in a Ras-independent manner. In agreement with the results of a previous study (B. A. Mainou, D. N. Everly, Jr., and N. Raab-Traub, J. Virol. 81:9680-9692, 2007), we show that the ability of LMP1 to activate ERK-MAPK mapped to its CTAR1 domain, the TRAF binding domain previously implicated in PI 3-kinase activation. A role for ERK-MAPK in LMP1-induced epithelial cell motility was identified, as LMP1-expressing cells displayed increased rates of haptotactic migration compared to those of LMP1-negative cells. These data implicate the ERK-MAPK pathway in LMP1-induced effects associated with transformation, suggesting that this pathway may contribute to the oncogenicity of LMP1 through its ability to promote cell motility and to enhance the invasive properties of epithelial cells.
Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)3654-64
Number of pages11
JournalJournal of virology
Issue number7
Publication statusPublished - 1 Apr 2008


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