[Show abstract][Hide abstract] ABSTRACT: The cytidine deaminase apolipoprotein B mRNA editing catalytic subunit-3 (APOBEC3) proteins have been identified as potent inhibitors of diverse retroviruses, retrotransposons and hepatitis B virus (HBV). The mechanism of APOBEC3 proteins in the control of HBV infection, however, is less clear. Here we report that APOBEC3B (A3B) displays dual inhibitory effects on both HBsAg and HBeAg expression as well as HBV core-associated DNA synthesis. Heterogeneous nuclear ribonucleoprotein K (hnRNP K), a positive regulator of HBV expression, has been identified as a major interaction partner of A3B protein. A3B protein inhibited the binding of hnRNP K to the enhancer II of HBV (Enh II), and S gene transcription of HBV. Moreover, A3B directly suppressed HBV S gene promoter activity. Individual variation in A3B expression was observed in both normal primary hepatocytes and liver tissues. Interestingly, A3B was able to inhibit CMV and SV40 promoter-mediated gene expression. In conclusion, A3B suppresses HBV replication in hepatocytes by inhibiting hnRNP K-mediated transcription and expression of HBV genes as well as HBV core DNA synthesis. In addition, A3B protein may be a broad antiviral host factor. Thus, regulated A3B expression may contribute to non-cytolytic HBV clearance in vivo.
[Show abstract][Hide abstract] ABSTRACT: Human APOBEC3 (apolipoprotein B mRNA editing enzyme, catalytic polypeptide 3) cytidine deaminases have been shown to be potent inhibitors of diverse retroviruses including Vif-deficient human immunodeficiency virus 1 (HIV-1), hepatitis virus B (HBV), adeno-associated virus, and endogenous retroelements. Despite the fact that these enzymes are known to be potential DNA mutators and to target retroviral DNA for cytidine deamination, the pathological effects of their deregulated expression in human diseases are not yet clear. Mutants of the viral HBx protein have been implicated in the carcinogenesis of hepatocellular carcinoma (HCC); however, little is known about how or why such mutants are generated in the human liver. Here, we report that a number of APOBEC3 deaminases preferentially edit the HBx region of HBV DNA and generate C-terminally truncated HBx mutants. Our functional studies indicated that APOBEC3-mediated HBx mutants, especially the C-terminally truncated mutants, cause a gain of function that enhances the colony-forming ability and proliferative capacity of neoplastic cells. Furthermore, we detected G-to-A hypermutation-mediated HBx mutants in preneoplastic liver tissues of selected patients with active chronic HBV infections. We also observed that the APOBEC3B (A3B) cytidine deaminase was widely up-regulated in HCC tumor tissues; it also promoted the growth of neoplastic human HepG2 liver cells and up-regulated heat shock transcription factor1 (HSF1) expression. Conclusion: These findings suggest that some of the APOBEC3 deaminases play a role in the carcinogenesis of HCC through the generation of HBx mutants, providing preneoplastic and neoplastic hepatocytes with a selective clonal growth advantage. Deregulated expression of A3B in liver tissues may also have the potential to promote genetic instability and tumorigenesis.
[Show abstract][Hide abstract] ABSTRACT: Shp2 tyrosine phosphatase plays a critical role in hematopoiesis, and dominant active mutations have been detected in the human gene PTPN11, encoding Shp2, in child leukemia patients. We report here that although no such mutations were detected in 44 adult leukemia patients screened, Shp2 expression levels were significantly elevated in primary leukemia cells and leukemia cell lines, as compared with normal hematopoietic progenitor cells. The Shp2 protein amounts correlated well with the hyperproliferative capacity but were inversely associated with the differentiation degree of leukemia cells. Suppression of Shp2 expression induced apoptosis and inhibition of leukemic cell clonogenic growth. Notably, the majority of Shp2 was preferentially localized to the plasma membrane and was constitutively phosphorylated on tyrosine in leukemia cells, and also in normal hematopoietic cells following mitogenic stimulation. Based on these results, we propose that aberrantly increased expression of Shp2 may contribute, collaboratively with other factors, to leukemogenesis.