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Exp Cell Res. 1999 May 1;248(2):589-98.

Selective activation of Ha-ras(val12) oncogene increases susceptibilityof NIH/3T3 cells to TNF-alpha.

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College of Medicine, National Cheng Kung University, Tainan, Taiwan, Republic of China.


This is the first report demonstrating that NIH/3T3 fibroblasts utilize the Raf-1/MAPK pathway to sensitize themselves to tumor necrosis factor-alpha (TNF-alpha) cytotoxicity under Ha-rasVal12 oncogene-overexpressed conditions. This paper clearly shows that the sensitivity of NIH/3T3 cells to TNF-alpha cytotoxicity positively correlated with the expression level of activated Ha-ras transgene, which was manipulated either positively by isopropyl-beta-d-thiogalactoside (IPTG) induction or negatively by a ribozyme or a dominant negative Ras suppression. Further analysis revealed that after TNF-alpha treatment, Ha-ras-overexpressed transformants underwent apoptosis. Overexpression of dominant negative Raf-1, Rac1, or RhoA in the Ha-ras transformants clarified that among these factors, only dominant negative Raf-1 could reverse the cell sensitivity to TNF-alpha, indicating that Raf-1, as a proapoptotic factor, indeed participates in TNF-alpha cytotoxicity. The anti-apoptotic roles of Bcl-2 and PI(3) kinase are also demonstrated by the Ha-ras transformants which became more resistant to TNF-alpha while overexpressing Bcl-2 or the activated p110 catalytic subunit. The analyses of the cell cycle and nuclear transcription factor activities revealed that TNF-alpha treatment caused the Ha-ras overexpressed transformants to shift from S to G0/G1 phase and increased the responses of AP-1, c-fos, and c-myc. Taken together, we suggest that the possible action of Ha-ras overexpression to sensitize TNF-alpha-treated fibroblasts is predominantly through the Ras/Raf-1/MAPK pathway to increase the responses of AP-1, c-fos, and c-myc, which are possibly involved in the aberration of cell cycle machinery, and subsequently to turn on the death program.

[Indexed for MEDLINE]

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