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Oncogene. 2005 Feb 24;24(9):1634-40.

Cyclooxygenase-2 interacts with p53 and interferes with p53-dependent transcription and apoptosis.

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Department of Pharmacology, State University of New York, Upstate Medical University, Syracuse, NY 13210, USA.


Cyclooxygenase-2 (COX-2) has been implicated in a variety of human malignancies and, accordingly, COX-2 selective inhibitors are being investigated as important chemopreventive and therapeutic agents. How COX-2 overexpression results in tumorigenesis and how COX-2 selective agents mediate their chemopreventive effects are issues that remain poorly understood. Here we report that the tumor suppressor p53 upregulates COX-2 expression and that COX-2 can in turn inhibit p53-dependent transcription. Additionally, a COX-2-selective inhibitor potentiates p53-induced apoptosis, which also supports the notion that COX-2 activity appears to interfere with p53 function. Expression of exogenous COX-2 in p53 wild-type cells does not affect the cytoplasmic or nuclear levels of p53, suggesting that COX-2 may not affect p53 turnover or subcellular localization. We further demonstrate that endogenous COX-2 interacts with p53 and that COX-2 and p53 interactions are a physiologically relevant event. Thus, p53 upregulates COX-2 and COX-2 in turn appears to negatively affect p53 activity via mechanisms that could involve physical interactions between COX-2 and p53. Based on our results, we propose that p53-dependent upregulation and activation of COX-2 appear to be yet another novel mechanism by which p53 could abate its own growth-inhibitory and apoptotic effects.

[Indexed for MEDLINE]

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