Human papillomavirus type 16 E6 and HPV-16 E6/E7 sensitize human keratinocytes to apoptosis induced by chemotherapeutic agents: Roles of p53 and caspase activation

Yongmin Liu, Ann McKalip, Brian Herman

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review

36 Scopus citations

Abstract

We and others have previously reported that human papillomavirus (HPV)- 16 E6 protein expression sensitizes certain cell types to apoptosis. To confirm that this sensitization occurred in HPV's natural host cells, and to explore the mechanism(s) of sensitization, we infected human keratinocytes (HKCs) with retroviruses containing HPV-6 E6, HPV-1 6 E6, HPV-1 6 E7, or HPV- 16 E6/E7. Apoptosis was monitored by DNA fragmentation gel analysis and direct observation of nuclei in cells stained with DAPI. Exposure of HKCs to etoposide, cisplatin, mitomycin C (MMC), atractyloside, and sodium butyrate, resulted in a time and dose-dependent induction of apoptosis. Expression of HPV-16 E6 and HPV-16 E6/E7, but not HPV-6 E6 or HPV-16 E7, enhanced the sensitivity of HKCs to cisplatin-, etoposide- and MMC-, but not atractyloside- or sodium butyrate-induced apoptosis. Expression of both HPV- 16 E6 and HPV-16 E6/E7 decreased, but did not abolish, p53 protein levels relative to normal HKCs, and resulted in cytoplasmic localization of wt p53. P53 induction occurred in HPV-16 E6 and HPV-16 E6/E7 expressing cells after exposure to cisplatin or MMC, though never to levels found in normal untreated HKCs. P21 levels were decreased in HPV-16 E6 and HPV-16 E6/E7 expressing HKCs, and no induction of p21 was seen in these cells following exposure to cisplatin or MMC. Caspase-3 activity was found to be elevated in HPV-16 E6-expressing HKCs following exposure to cisplatin and MMC as documented by fluorometric and Western Blot analysis. Expression of wt CrmA or treatment of HPV-16 E6 expressing HKCs with the caspase-3 inhibitor DEVD.fmk prevented HPV-16 E6-induced sensitization in HKCs. These results suggest that HPV-16 E6 and HPV-16 E6/E7 expression sensitizes HKCs to apoptosis caused by cisplatin, etoposide and MMC, but not atractyloside or sodium butyrate. The data also suggest that wt p53 and caspase-3 activity are required for HPV-16 E6 and HPV-16 E6/E7-induced sensitization of HKCs to DNA damaging agents. (C) 2000 Wiley-Liss, Inc.

Original languageEnglish (US)
Pages (from-to)334-349
Number of pages16
JournalJournal of Cellular Biochemistry
Volume78
Issue number2
DOIs
StatePublished - Jan 1 2000
Externally publishedYes

Keywords

  • Apoptosis
  • Caspases
  • DNA damage
  • Human papillomavirus
  • p53

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