A human herpesvirus microRNA inhibits p21 expression and attenuates p21-mediated cell cycle arrest.

Journal Article (Journal Article)

The oncogenic human gammaherpesvirus Kaposi's sarcoma-associated herpesvirus (KSHV) expresses 12 viral microRNAs (miRNAs) in latently infected cells. Here, we report that cellular mRNAs encoding the cellular cyclin-dependent kinase inhibitor p21, a key inducer of cell cycle arrest, are direct targets for KSHV miR-K1. Ectopically expressed KSHV miR-K1 specifically inhibited the expression of endogenous p21 in KSHV-negative cells and strongly attenuated the cell cycle arrest that normally occurs upon p53 activation, yet miR-K1 did not prevent the induction of other p53-responsive genes. Stable knockdown of miR-K1 in latently KSHV-infected human primary effusion lymphoma (PEL) B cells revealed a derepression of p21 expression and enhanced cell cycle arrest following activation of p53. Our data demonstrate that miR-K1 represses the expression of p21, a protein with known tumor suppressor functions, and suggest that this KSHV miRNA is likely to contribute to the oncogenic potential of this opportunistic viral pathogen.

Full Text

Duke Authors

Cited Authors

  • Gottwein, E; Cullen, BR

Published Date

  • May 2010

Published In

Volume / Issue

  • 84 / 10

Start / End Page

  • 5229 - 5237

PubMed ID

  • 20219912

Pubmed Central ID

  • PMC2863803

Electronic International Standard Serial Number (EISSN)

  • 1098-5514

Digital Object Identifier (DOI)

  • 10.1128/JVI.00202-10


  • eng

Conference Location

  • United States