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Cancer Lett. 2000 Aug 1;156(1):63-72.

p53-dependent expression of PIG3 during proliferation, genotoxic stress, and reversible growth arrest.

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  • 1Department of Biochemistry, Center in Molecular Toxicology, and the Vanderbilt-Ingram Cancer Center, 652 Medical Research Building II, Vanderbilt University School of Medicine, 2220 Pierce Avenue, Nashville, TN 37232-6305, Nashville, USA.


The p53-inducible gene 3 (PIG3) was recently identified in a screen for genes induced by p53 before the onset of apoptosis. PIG3 shares significant homology with oxidoreductases from several species. In this study, PIG3-specific antibodies were used to analyze cellular PIG3 protein levels under control and genotoxic stress conditions. PIG3 protein was localized to the cytoplasm and induced in primary, non-transformed, and transformed cell cultures after exposure to genotoxic agents. The induction of PIG3 was p53-dependent and occurred with delayed kinetics as compared with other p53 downstream targets, such as p21 and MDM2. Using a p53-inducible cell model system, in which p53-mediated growth arrest is reversible, we found that PIG3 levels were increased during p53-mediated growth arrest. Interestingly, elevated levels of PIG3 were maintained in cells that resumed cycling in the absence of ectopic p53 expression, suggesting that PIG3 is a long-lived reporter, which may be useful for detecting transient activation of p53.

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