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Oncogene. 2005 Mar 31;24(14):2317-29.

Direct transcriptional regulation of Bim by FoxO3a mediates STI571-induced apoptosis in Bcr-Abl-expressing cells.

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Cancer Research-UK labs, Department of Cancer Medicine, MRC Cyclotron Building, Imperial College London, Hammersmith Hospital, Du Cane Road, London W12 0NN, UK.


In this study, we have used the human BV173 and the mouse BaF3/Bcr-Abl-expressing cell lines as model systems to investigate the molecular mechanisms whereby STI571 and FoxO3a regulate Bim expression and apoptosis. FoxO3a lies downstream of Bcr-Abl signalling and is constitutively phosphorylated in the Bcr-Abl-positive BV173 and BaF3/Bcr-Abl cells. Inhibition of Bcr-Abl kinase by STI571 results in FoxO3a activation, induction of Bim expression and apoptosis. Using reporter gene assays, we demonstrate that STI571 and FoxO3a activate Bim transcription through a FoxO-binding site (FHRE) located within the promoter. This was verified by DNA pull-down and chromatin immunoprecipitation analyses. We find that conditional activation of FoxO3a leads to induction of Bim expression and apoptosis. Conversely, silencing of FoxO3a in Bcr-Abl-expressing cells abolishes STI571-mediated Bim induction and apoptosis. Together, the results presented clearly confirm FoxO3a as a key regulator of apoptosis induced by STI571, and show that Bim is a direct transcriptional target of FoxO3a that mediates the STI571-induced apoptosis. Thus, STI571 induces an accumulation of FoxO3a activity which in turn binds directly to an FHRE in the promoter to activate Bim expression and apoptosis.

[Indexed for MEDLINE]

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