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Nucleic Acids Res. 2000 Nov 15;28(22):4410-8.

The tumour suppressor protein p53 can repress transcription of cyclin B.

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Medizinische Klinik II, Max Bürger Forschungszentrum, Universität Leipzig, Johannisallee 30, D-04103 Leipzig, Germany.


The tumour suppressor protein p53 has functions in controlling the G(1)/S and G(2)/M transitions. Central regulators for progression from G(2) to mitosis are B-type cyclins complexed with cdc2 kinase. In mammals two cyclin B proteins are found, cyclin B1 and B2. We show that upon treatment of HepG2 cells with 5-fluorouracil or methotrexate, p53 levels increase while concentrations of cyclin B2 mRNA, measured by RT-PCR with the LightCycler system, are reduced. In DLD-1 colorectal adenocarcinoma cells (DLD-1-tet-off-p53) cyclin B1 and B2 mRNA levels drop after expression of wild-type p53 but not after induction of a DNA binding-deficient mutant of p53. Analysis of the cyclin B2 promoter reveals specific repression of this gene by p53. Transfection of wild-type p53 into SaOS-2 cells shuts off transcription from a cyclin B2 promoter-luciferase construct whereas a p53 mutant protein does not. The cyclin B2 promoter does not contain a consensus p53 binding site. Most of the p53-dependent transcriptional responsiveness resides in its 226 bp core promoter. Taken together with earlier observations on p53-dependent transcription of cyclin B1, our results suggest that one way of regulating G(2) arrest may be a reduction in cyclin B levels through p53-dependent transcriptional repression.

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