[show abstract][hide abstract] ABSTRACT: The tumor suppressor p53 protein is activated by genotoxic stress and regulates genes involved in senescence, apoptosis and cell-cycle arrest. Nine p53 isoforms have been described that may modulate suppressive functions of the canonical p53 protein. Among them, Delta133p53 lacks the 132 proximal residues and has been shown to modulate p53-induced apoptosis and cell-cycle arrest. Delta133p53 is expressed from a specific mRNA, p53I4, driven by an alternative promoter P2 located between intron 1 and exon 5 of TP53 gene. Here, we report that the P2 promoter is regulated in a p53-dependent manner. Delta133p53 expression is increased in response to DNA damage by doxorubicin in p53 wild-type cell lines, but not in p53-mutated cells. Chromatin immunoprecipitation and luciferase assays using P2 promoter deletion constructs indicate that p53 binds functional response elements located within the P2 promoter. We also show that Delta133p53 does not bind specifically to p53 consensus DNA sequence in vitro, but competes with wild-type p53 in specific DNA-binding assays. Finally, we report that Delta133p53 counteracts p53-dependent growth suppression in clonogenic assays. These observations indicate that Delta133p53 is a novel target of p53 that may participate in a negative feedback loop controlling p53 function.