Unique Signaling Properties of CTAR1 in LMP1-Mediated Transformation
The Epstein-Barr virus (EBV) latent membrane protein 1 (LMP1) gene is considered the EBV oncogene as it is necessary for EBV-mediated transformation of B lymphocytes and itself transforms rodent fibroblasts. LMP1 activates the NF-κB, phosphatidylinositol 3-kinase (PI3K)-Akt, mitogen-activated protein kinase, and Jun N-terminal protein kinase signaling pathways through its two signaling domains, carboxyl-terminal activating regions 1 and 2 (CTAR1 and CTAR2). CTAR1 and CTAR2 induce signal
... tion pathways through their direct (CTAR1) or indirect (CTAR2) recruitment of tumor necrosis factor receptor-associated factors (TRAFs). CTAR1 is necessary for LMP1-mediated transformation as well as activation of PI3K signaling and induction of cell cycle markers associated with G1/S transition. In this study, activation of PI3K-Akt signaling and deregulation of cell cycle markers were mapped to the TRAF-binding domain within CTAR1 and to the residues between CTAR1 and CTAR2. LMP1 CTAR1 also activated the MEK1/2-extracellular signal-regulated kinase 1/2 signaling pathway, and this activation was necessary for LMP1-induced transformation of Rat-1 fibroblasts. Dominant-negative forms of TRAF2 and TRAF3 inhibited but did not fully block LMP1-mediated transformation. These findings identify a new signaling pathway that is uniquely activated by the TRAF-binding domain of LMP1 and is required for transformation.