BMI-1 is induced by the Epstein-Barr virus oncogene LMP1, and regulates the expression of viral target genes in Hodgkin's lymphoma cells

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Polycomb group (PcG) proteins are chromatin modifiers that are necessary for the maintenance and renewal of embryonic and adult stem cells. However, overexpression of the PcG protein, Bmi-1, causes lymphoma in transgenic mice. We show that Bmi-1 is up-regulated in Hodgkin lymphoma (HL) cells by the Epstein-Barr virus (EBV) oncogene latent membrane protein-1 (LMP1) and that this up-regulation is mediated by NF-kappaB signaling. We also show that Bmi-1 is up-regulated by NF-kappaB in EBV-negative HL cells. Down-regulation of LMP1 and Bmi-1 decreased the survival of HL cells, suggesting that Bmi-1 may mediate the prosurvival effects of LMP1-induced NF-kappaB signaling in HL cells. Transcriptional targets of Bmi-1 were identified after its knockdown in an HL cell line. We show here that Bmi-1 and LMP1 down-regulate the ataxia telangiectasia-mutated (ATM) tumor suppressor and conclude that Bmi-1 contributes to LMP1-induced oncogenesis in HL.


Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)2597-2603
Number of pages7
Issue number6
Publication statusPublished - 15 Mar 2007