Genomic and proteomic analysis reveals a threshold level of MYC required for tumor maintenance CANCER RESEARCH Shachaf, C. M., Gentles, A. J., Elchuri, S., Sahoo, D., Soen, Y., Sharpe, O., Perez, O. D., Chang, M., Mitchel, D., Robinson, W. H., Dill, D., Nolan, G. P., Plevritis, S. K., Felsher, D. W. 2008; 68 (13): 5132-5142


MYC overexpression has been implicated in the pathogenesis of most types of human cancers. MYC is likely to contribute to tumorigenesis by its effects on global gene expression. Previously, we have shown that the loss of MYC overexpression is sufficient to reverse tumorigenesis. Here, we show that there is a precise threshold level of MYC expression required for maintaining the tumor phenotype, whereupon there is a switch from a gene expression program of proliferation to a state of proliferative arrest and apoptosis. Oligonucleotide microarray analysis and quantitative PCR were used to identify changes in expression in 3,921 genes, of which 2,348 were down-regulated and 1,573 were up-regulated. Critical changes in gene expression occurred at or near the MYC threshold, including genes implicated in the regulation of the G(1)-S and G(2)-M cell cycle checkpoints and death receptor/apoptosis signaling. Using two-dimensional protein analysis followed by mass spectrometry, phospho-flow fluorescence-activated cell sorting, and antibody arrays, we also identified changes at the protein level that contributed to MYC-dependent tumor regression. Proteins involved in mRNA translation decreased below threshold levels of MYC. Thus, at the MYC threshold, there is a loss of its ability to maintain tumorigenesis, with associated shifts in gene and protein expression that reestablish cell cycle checkpoints, halt protein translation, and promote apoptosis.

View details for DOI 10.1158/0008-5472.CAN-07-6192

View details for PubMedID 18593912