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PLoS One. 2012;7(9):e45402. doi: 10.1371/journal.pone.0045402. Epub 2012 Sep 17.

Expression of TIP-1 confers radioresistance of malignant glioma cells.

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  • 1Department of Radiation Oncology, Vanderbilt University, Nashville, Tennessee, United States of America.



Malignant gliomas represent one group of tumors that poorly respond to ionizing radiation (IR) alone or combined with chemotherapeutic agents because of the intrinsic or acquired resistance. In this study, TIP-1 was identified as one novel protein that confers resistance of glioma cells to IR.


Meta-analysis indicated that high TIP-1 expression levels correlate with the poor prognosis of human malignant gliomas after radiotherapy. Studies with established human glioma cell lines demonstrated that TIP-1 depletion with specific shRNAs sensitized the cells to IR, whereas an ectopic expression of TIP-1 protected the glioma cells from the IR-induced DNA damage and cell death. Biochemical studies indicated that TIP-1 protein promoted p53 ubiquitination and resulted in a reduced p53 protein level. Furthermore, p53 and its ubiquitination are required for the TIP-1 regulated cellular response to IR. A yeast two-hybrid screening identified that TIP-1, through its single PDZ domain, binds to the carboxyl terminus of LZAP that has been studied as one tumor suppressor functioning through ARF binding and p53 activation. It was revealed that the presence of TIP-1 enhances the protein association between LZAP and ARF and modulates the functionality of ARF/HDM2 toward multi-ubiquitination of p53, while depleting TIP-1 rescued p53 from polyubiquitination and degradation in the irradiated glioma cells. Studies with a mouse xenograft model indicated that depleting TIP-1 within D54 cells improved the tumor growth control with IR.


This study provided the first evidence showing that TIP-1 modulates p53 protein stability and is involved in the radioresistance of malignant gliomas, suggesting that antagonizing TIP-1 might be one novel approach to sensitize malignant gliomas to radiotherapy.

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