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J Virol. 1995 Apr;69(4):2515-24.

Mutations in the DNA-binding and transcriptional activation domains of v-Myb cooperate in transformation.

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Department of Pathology, Stanford University, California 94305-5324.


The v-Myb protein encoded by avian myeloblastosis virus causes oncogenic transformation of monoblastic cells committed to the monocyte/macrophage lineage. v-Myb is a doubly truncated form of its normal cellular counterpart, c-Myb. In addition to its N- and C-terminal deletions, v-Myb contains a number of amino acid substitutions relative to c-Myb. We have previously shown that neither overexpression of c-Myb nor introduction of these amino acid substitutions into c-Myb is sufficient for transformation of myelomonocytic cells. However, a doubly truncated form of c-Myb which lacked these substitutions transformed myeloblastic cells that appeared to be committed to the granulocytic pathway. We demonstrate here that mutations in both the DNA-binding and transcriptional activation domains of v-Myb are required for transformation of rapidly growing monoblasts rather than more slowly growing myeloblasts. These rapidly growing monoblasts do not express mim-1, a target gene for the Gag-Myb-Ets protein of E26 leukemia virus, or C/EBP proteins which cooperate with Myb to activate mim-1 expression. Furthermore, v-Myb proteins which contain both sets of these mutations are weaker transcriptional activators relative to proteins which lack these mutations. These results support a model in which amino acid substitutions in v-Myb have been selected for their ability to activate only a subset of those genes which can be activated by a doubly truncated form of c-Myb. In particular, mim-1 appears to represent a class of genes whose expression was selected against during the development of an increasingly virulent strain of avian myeloblastosis virus by passage in animals.

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