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Cell Death Differ. 2005 Jul;12(7):724-33.

Daxx is required for stress-induced cell death and JNK activation.

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MRC Toxicology Unit, University of Leicester, Leicester, UK.


Daxx has been implicated in the modulation of apoptosis in response to various stimuli. In the nucleus, Daxx interacts and colocalizes with the promyelocytic leukemia protein (PML) into the PML-nuclear body. Moreover, overexpressed Daxx positively modulates FAS-ligand and TGFbeta-induced apoptosis. However, recent reports indicate that Daxx can also act as an antiapoptotic factor. As most studies on the role of Daxx in cell death have been conducted using tumour cell lines, we analysed the function of Daxx in physiological settings. We found that Daxx is induced upon exposure to ultraviolet (UV) irradiation and hydrogen peroxide treatment. We employed RNA interference to downregulate Daxx in primary fibroblasts. Remarkably, Daxx-depleted cells are resistant to cell death induced by both UV irradiation and oxidative stress. Furthermore, the downregulation of Daxx results in impaired MKK/c-Jun-N-terminal kinase (JNK) activation. This is the first evidence that Daxx promotes cell death and JNK activation in physiological conditions.

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