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Hoffmann, R. A wiki for the life sciences where authorship matters. Nature Genetics (2008)

Antisense to the Epstein-Barr virus (EBV)-encoded latent membrane protein 1 (LMP-1) sensitizes EBV-immortalized B cells to transforming growth factor-beta and chemotherapeutic agents.

The Epstein-Barr virus (EBV)-encoded latent membrane protein 1 (LMP-1) is absolutely required for EBV transformation of B cells. LMP-1 mimics a constitutively activated receptor of the tumor necrosis factor receptor family, mediating diverse oncogenic functions that influence growth, differentiation and susceptibility to apoptosis. Given the critical functions of LMP-1 in EBV-associated transformation, it represents a rational therapeutic target for modulation. We used antisense oligodeoxynucleotides targeted to LMP-1 as a strategy to suppress LMP-1 expression and thereby inhibit its functions. In previous studies, we have shown that short-term treatment of EBV-positive lymphoblastoid cell lines (LCLs) with LMP-1 antisense oligodeoxynucleotides can dramatically reduce levels of LMP-1 protein in association with inhibition of proliferation, stimulation of apoptosis, down-regulation of Bcl-2 and Mcl-1 and enhanced sensitivity to the chemotherapeutic agent, etoposide. Here, we provide further evidence of the profound effects of reducing LMP-1 levels using antisense oligodeoxynucleotides in EBV-transformed B cells. We have shown that LMP-1 antisense treatment of LCLs partially restores sensitivity to the anti-proliferative and apoptotic effects of transforming growth factor-beta, a potent negative regulator of normal human B-cell growth, in association with a reduction in cyclin D2 levels. In addition, LMP-1 antisense sensitizes LCLs to chemotherapeutic drugs from diverse classes, including etoposide, vincristine and dexamethasone, by enhancing apoptotic cell death. Finally, the anti-proliferative and apoptotic effects of LMP-1 antisense treatment were observed not only in laboratory-derived LCLs, but also in an EBV-positive cell line derived from an AIDS-related lymphoma. These studies demonstrate that antisense targeting of LMP-1 represents a rational therapeutic strategy for EBV-positive lymphoproliferative disorders.[1]


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