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Int J Cancer. 2001 Feb 20;96(1):22-31.

Activation of Gadd34 by diverse apoptotic signals and suppression of its growth inhibitory effects by apoptotic inhibitors.

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Basic Research Laboratory, Division of Basic Science, National Cancer Institute, Bethesda, Maryland 20892, USA.


DNA damage has many cellular consequences including, in some cases, apoptosis. Expression of Gadd34 was shown to be increased by ionizing radiation only in cells that undergo rapid apoptosis following this treatment. The effects of various other apoptosis-inducing agents as well as apoptosis-inhibiting genes on regulation of Gadd34 were investigated. In many cell types, agents which have been reported to lead to increased intracellular ceramide levels led to an increase in Gadd34 transcript levels. These included TNFalpha, the ceramide analog C-2 ceramide, dimethyl sphingosine and anti-Fas antibody as well as ionizing radiation. Induction of Gadd34 by ionizing radiation was coincident with the onset of apoptosis and increased as apoptosis progressed. In a short-term transfection assay, more than 30% of Gadd34-transfected cells exhibited nuclear fragmentation by 48 hours. Apoptosis, as well as induction of Gadd34 by apoptotic stimuli, was attenuated by the apoptosis inhibitors, Bcl-2, cowpox virus CrmA and herpes simplex virus ICP34.5. Thus, activation of Gadd34 is a downstream event in apoptotic signaling pathways and may directly contribute to the apoptotic process.

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