Research Papers:

The dominant-negative interplay between p53, p63 and p73: A family affair

Olivier Billant, Alice Léon, Solenn Le Guellec, Gaëlle Friocourt, Marc Blondel and Cécile Voisset _

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Oncotarget. 2016; 7:69549-69564. https://doi.org/10.18632/oncotarget.11774

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Olivier Billant1, Alice Léon1, Solenn Le Guellec1, Gaëlle Friocourt1, Marc Blondel1,*, Cécile Voisset1,*

1Inserm UMR 1078, Université de Bretagne Occidentale, Faculté de Médecine et des Sciences de la Santé, Etablissement Français du Sang (EFS) Bretagne, CHRU Brest, Hôpital Morvan, Laboratoire de Génétique Moléculaire, Brest, France

*These authors contributed equally to this work

Correspondence to:

Cécile Voisset, email: cecile.voisset@univ-brest.fr

Marc Blondel, email: marc.blondel@univ-brest.fr

Keywords: p53, p63, p73, dominant-negative effect, yeast

Received: May 01, 2016     Accepted: July 10, 2016     Published: August 31, 2016


The tumor suppression activity of p53 is frequently impaired in cancers even when a wild-type copy of the gene is still present, suggesting that a dominant-negative effect is exerted by some of p53 mutants and isoforms. p63 and p73, which are related to p53, have also been reported to be subjected to a similar loss of function, suggesting that a dominant-negative interplay might happen between p53, p63 and p73. However, to which extent p53 hotspot mutants and isoforms of p53, p63 and p73 are able to interfere with the tumor suppressive activity of their siblings as well as the underlying mechanisms remain undeciphered. Using yeast, we showed that a dominant-negative effect is widely spread within the p53/p63/p73 family as all p53 loss-of-function hotspot mutants and several of the isoforms of p53 and p73 tested exhibit a dominant-negative potential. In addition, we found that this dominant-negative effect over p53 wild-type is based on tetramer poisoning through the formation of inactive hetero-tetramers and does not rely on a prion-like mechanism contrary to what has been previously suggested. We also showed that mutant p53-R175H gains the ability to inhibit p63 and p73 activity by a mechanism that is only partially based on tetramerization.

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