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TERT promoter mutations in melanoma render TERT expression dependent on MAPK pathway activation

By Andrelou F. Vallarelli, P. Sivaramakrishna Rachakonda, Jocelyne André, Barbara Heidenreich, Laurent Riffaud, Armand Bensussan, Rajiv Kumar and Nicolas Dumaz

Abstract

International audienceThe mechanism of telomerase re-activation in cancer had remained elusive until the discovery of frequent mutations in the promoter of the TERT gene that encodes the catalytic reverse transcriptase subunit of telomerase. We investigated the regulation of TERT expression in melanoma cell lines and our results show that promoter mutations render TERT expression dependent on MAPK activation due to oncogenic BRAF or NRAS mutations. Mutations in the TERT promoter create binding sites for ETS transcription factors. ETS1, expressed in melanoma cell lines, undergoes activating phosphorylation by ERK at Thr38 residue as a consequence of constitutively activated MAPK pathway. We demonstrate that ETS1 binds on the mutated TERT promoter leading to the re-expression of the gene. The inhibition of ETS1 resulted in reduced TERT expression. We provide evidence that the TERT promoter mutations provide a direct link between TERT expression and MAPK pathway activation due to BRAF or NRAS mutations via the transcription factor ETS1

Topics: BRAF, ETS1, MAPK pathway, melanoma, telomerase, [ SDV.IB ] Life Sciences [q-bio]/Bioengineering
Publisher: Impact journals
Year: 2016
OAI identifier: oai:HAL:hal-01378654v1
Provided by: Hal-Diderot
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