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Oncogene. 2009 Jun 25;28(25):2393-405. doi: 10.1038/onc.2009.111. Epub 2009 May 4.

Fbw7 promotes ubiquitin-dependent degradation of c-Myb: involvement of GSK3-mediated phosphorylation of Thr-572 in mouse c-Myb.

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Department of Biochemistry 1, Hamamatsu University School of Medicine, Higashi-ku, Hamamatsu, Shizuoka, Japan.


Expression of oncoprotein c-Myb oscillates during hematopoiesis and hematological malignancies. Its quantity is not only regulated through transcriptional control but also through the ubiquitin-proteasome pathway, accompanied by phosphorylation, although the mechanisms are poorly understood. In this report, we tried to identify an E3 ubiquitin ligase, which targets c-Myb for ubiquitin-dependent degradation. We found that an F-box protein, Fbw7, interacted with c-Myb, which is mutated in numerous cancers. Fbw7 facilitated ubiquitylation and degradation of c-Myb in intact cells. Moreover, depletion of Fbw7 by RNA interference delayed turnover and increased the abundance of c-Myb in myeloid leukemia cells concomitantly, and suppressed the transcriptional level of gamma-globin, which receives transcriptional repression from c-Myb. In addition, we analysed sites required for both ubiquitylation and degradation of c-Myb. We found that Thr-572 is critical for Fbw7-mediated ubiquitylation in mouse c-Myb using site-directed mutagenesis. Fbw7 recognized the phosphorylation of Thr-572, which was mediated by glycogen synthase kinase 3 (GSK3). In consequence, the c-Myb protein was markedly stabilized by the substitution of Thr-572 to Ala. These observations suggest that SCF(Fbw7) ubiquitin ligase regulates phosphorylation-dependent degradation of c-Myb protein.

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