Complexity of N-Myc transcriptional function in childhood neuroblastoma

Iraci, Nunzio (2009) Complexity of N-Myc transcriptional function in childhood neuroblastoma, [Dissertation thesis], Alma Mater Studiorum Università di Bologna. Dottorato di ricerca in Biologia e fisiologia cellulare, 21 Ciclo. DOI 10.6092/unibo/amsdottorato/2032.
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Myc is a transcription factor that can activate transcription of several hundreds genes by direct binding to their promoters at specific DNA sequences (E-box). However, recent studies have also shown that it can exert its biological role by repressing transcription. Such studies collectively support a model in which c-Myc-mediated repression occurs through interactions with transcription factors bound to promoter DNA regions but not through direct recognition of typical E-box sequences. Here, we investigated whether N-Myc can also repress gene transcription, and how this is mechanistically achieved. We used human neuroblastoma cells as a model system in that N-MYC amplification/over-expression represents a key prognostic marker of this tumour. By means of transcription profile analyses we could identify at least 5 genes (TRKA, p75NTR, ABCC3, TG2, p21) that are specifically repressed by N-Myc. Through a dual-step-ChIP assay and genetic dissection of gene promoters, we found that N-Myc is physically associated with gene promoters in vivo, in proximity of the transcription start site. N-Myc association with promoters requires interaction with other proteins, such as Sp1 and Miz1 transcription factors. Furthermore, we found that N-Myc may repress gene expression by interfering directly with Sp1 and/or with Miz1 activity (i.e. TRKA, p75NTR, ABCC3, p21) or by recruiting Histone Deacetylase 1 (Hdac1) (i.e. TG2). In vitro analyses show that distinct N-Myc domains can interact with Sp1, Miz1 and Hdac1, supporting the idea that Myc may participate in distinct repression complexes by interacting specifically with diverse proteins. Finally, results show that N-Myc, through repressed genes, affects important cellular functions, such as apoptosis, growth, differentiation and motility. Overall, our results support a model in which N-Myc, like c-Myc, can repress gene transcription by direct interaction with Sp1 and/or Miz1, and provide further lines of evidence on the importance of transcriptional repression by Myc factors in tumour biology.

Tipologia del documento
Tesi di dottorato
Iraci, Nunzio
Dottorato di ricerca
Scuola di dottorato
Scienze biologiche, biomediche e biotecnologiche
Settore disciplinare
Settore concorsuale
Data di discussione
21 Aprile 2009

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