Radiation-Induced Phosphorylation of a Prion-Like Domain Regulates Transformation by FUS-CHOP.
Chromosomal translocations generate oncogenic fusion proteins in approximately one-third of sarcomas, but how these proteins promote tumorigenesis is not well understood. Interestingly, some translocation-driven cancers exhibit dramatic clinical responses to therapy, such as radiotherapy, although the precise mechanism has not been elucidated. Here we reveal a molecular mechanism by which the fusion oncoprotein FUS-CHOP promotes tumor maintenance that also explains the remarkable sensitivity of myxoid liposarcomas to radiation therapy. FUS-CHOP interacted with chromatin remodeling complexes to regulate sarcoma cell proliferation. One of these chromatin remodelers, SNF2H, colocalized with FUS-CHOP genome-wide at active enhancers. Following ionizing radiation, DNA damage response kinases phosphorylated the prion-like domain of FUS-CHOP to impede these protein-protein interactions, which are required for transformation. Therefore, the DNA damage response after irradiation disrupted oncogenic targeting of chromatin remodelers required for FUS-CHOP-driven sarcomagenesis. This mechanism of disruption links phosphorylation of the prion-like domain of an oncogenic fusion protein to DNA damage after ionizing radiation and reveals that a dependence on oncogenic chromatin remodeling underlies sensitivity to radiation therapy in myxoid liposarcoma. SIGNIFICANCE: Prion-like domains, which are frequently translocated in cancers as oncogenic fusion proteins that drive global epigenetic changes, confer sensitivity to radiation via disruption of oncogenic interactions.
Chen, M; Foster, JP; Lock, IC; Leisenring, NH; Daniel, AR; Floyd, W; Xu, E; Davis, IJ; Kirsch, DG
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