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Gene Review

WNT16  -  wingless-type MMTV integration site family...

Homo sapiens

Synonyms: Protein Wnt-16
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High impact information on WNT16

  • Here, we show that the E2A-Pbx1 fusion protein activates the expression of a novel WNT gene, WNT-16 [1].
  • WNT-16 normally is expressed in peripheral lymphoid organs such as spleen, appendix, and lymph nodes, but not in bone marrow [1].
  • As two isoforms of Wnt16, Wnt16a and Wnt16b, have been recently identified, we demonstrated by using RT-PCR and Western blot that Wnt16b (and not Wnt16a) is overexpressed in t(1;19)-containing cell lines [2].
  • Using specific short interfering RNA (siRNA) and an anti-Wnt16 antibody, we showed that targeted-Wnt16b inhibition leads to apoptotic cell death [2].
  • Inhibition of Wnt16 in human acute lymphoblastoid leukemia cells containing the t(1;19) translocation induces apoptosis [2].

Biological context of WNT16

  • Human WNT16 isoform 1 (NM_057168.1), consisting of exons 1b, 2, 3 and 4, was identified as the evolutionarily conserved representative isoform [3].
  • The WNT16 gene at human chromosome 7q31.31 encodes two isoforms due to alternative splicing of an alternative promoter type [3].
  • We have identified a novel isoform of the recently described WNT family member, Wnt16, following analysis of chromosome 7q31 genomic sequence [4].
  • Furthermore, the significant decrease in Wnt16b mRNA levels (but not of the Wnt16a isoform of the Wnt16 gene), observed following depletion of the fusion gene, confirms the hypothesis that Wnt16b is a target of E2A-PBX1 [5].
  • Comparative genomics on Wnt16 orthologs [3].

Other interactions of WNT16

  • Phylogenetic analyses on WNT family members revealed that WNT16 was most closely related to WNT7A and WNT7B paralogs [3].
  • Other Wnt molecules were largely unchanged (Wnt4 and Wnt16), or tended to be expressed at lower levels (Wnt7b) [6].


  1. Oncogenic homeodomain transcription factor E2A-Pbx1 activates a novel WNT gene in pre-B acute lymphoblastoid leukemia. McWhirter, J.R., Neuteboom, S.T., Wancewicz, E.V., Monia, B.P., Downing, J.R., Murre, C. Proc. Natl. Acad. Sci. U.S.A. (1999) [Pubmed]
  2. Inhibition of Wnt16 in human acute lymphoblastoid leukemia cells containing the t(1;19) translocation induces apoptosis. Mazieres, J., You, L., He, B., Xu, Z., Lee, A.Y., Mikami, I., McCormick, F., Jablons, D.M. Oncogene (2005) [Pubmed]
  3. Comparative genomics on Wnt16 orthologs. Katoh, Y., Katoh, M. Oncol. Rep. (2005) [Pubmed]
  4. Wnt-16a, a novel Wnt-16 isoform, which shows differential expression in adult human tissues. Fear, M.W., Kelsell, D.P., Spurr, N.K., Barnes, M.R. Biochem. Biophys. Res. Commun. (2000) [Pubmed]
  5. The effects of siRNA-mediated inhibition of E2A-PBX1 on EB-1 and Wnt16b expression in the 697 pre-B leukemia cell line. Casagrande, G., te Kronnie, G., Basso, G. Haematologica (2006) [Pubmed]
  6. Increased expression of Wnt5a in psoriatic plaques. Reischl, J., Schwenke, S., Beekman, J.M., Mrowietz, U., St??rzebecher, S., Heubach, J.F. J. Invest. Dermatol. (2007) [Pubmed]
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