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Mol Cell. 2004 Oct 8;16(1):47-58.

An Rb-Skp2-p27 pathway mediates acute cell cycle inhibition by Rb and is retained in a partial-penetrance Rb mutant.

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Department of Developmental and Molecular Biology, The Albert Einstein Comprehensive Cancer Center, Albert Einstein College of Medicine, Bronx, NY 10461, USA.


It is believed that Rb blocks G1-S transition by inhibiting expression of E2F regulated genes. Here, we report that the effects of E2F repression lag behind the onset of G1 cell cycle arrest in timed Rb reexpression experiments. In comparison, kinase inhibitor p27Kip1 protein accumulates with a faster kinetics. Conversely, Rb knockout leads to faster p27 degradation. Rb interacts with the N terminus of Skp2, interferes with Skp2-p27 interaction, and inhibits ubiquitination of p27. Disruption of p27 function or expression of the Skp2 N terminus prevents Rb from causing G1 arrest. A full-penetrance, inactive Rb mutant fails to interfere with Skp2-p27 interaction but, interestingly, a partial-penetrance Rb mutant that is defective for E2F binding retains full activity in inhibiting Skp2-p27 interaction and can induce G1 cell cycle arrest with wild-type kinetics. These results identify an Rb-Skp2-p27 pathway in Rb function, which may be involved in inhibition of tumor progression.

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