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Oncol Rep. 2012 Jul;28(1):276-82. doi: 10.3892/or.2012.1798. Epub 2012 May 4.

Hepatitis B virus X (HBX) protein upregulates β-catenin in a human hepatic cell line by sequestering SIRT1 deacetylase.

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WCU, Department of Cogno-Mechatronics Engineering, Pusan National University, Busan, Republic of Korea.


Hepatitis B virus X (HBX) protein has been reported to induce upregulation of β-catenin, a known proto-oncogene, in p53-knockout and p53-mutant hepatic cell lines both in a GSK-3β-dependent manner and via interaction with adenomatous polyposis coli, which results in protection from β-catenin degradation. In this study, we describe a novel mechanism for HBX-mediated upregulation of β-catenin. We observed that HBX interacts with SIRT1, a class III histone deacetylase. Furthermore, the presence of HBX attenuated the interaction between SIRT1 and β-catenin, leading to protection of β-catenin from the inhibitory action of SIRT1. Reduction of SIRT1 with siRNA or suppression of SIRT1 activity with nicotinamide upregulated β-catenin protein levels. In contrast, enhancement of SIRT1 activity with resveratrol reduced β-catenin protein levels. Furthermore, in Hep3B cells stably expressing HBX, overexpression of SIRT1 or treatment with resveratrol enhanced sensitivity to doxorubicin-induced apoptosis, indicating that upregulation of SIRT1 could be a therapeutic strategy for HBV-related hepatocellular carcinoma. Based on these results, we propose that HBX upregulates β-catenin by sequestering SIRT1, which leads to anticancer drug treatment resistance.

[Indexed for MEDLINE]

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