The Epstein-Barr virus (EBV)-encoded latent membrane protein (LMP-1) is required for viral transformation and functions to protect cells from apoptotic cell death, in part, by induction of antiapoptotic genes, including Bcl-2 and A20. We have used antisense oligodeoxynucleotides targeted to LMP- 1 as a strategy to suppress LMP-1 expression and thereby inhibit its functions. We have shown that levels of LMP-1 protein in EBV-positive lymphoblastoid cell lines can be reduced by in vitro treatment with unmodified oligodeoxynucleotides targeted to the first five codons of the LMP-1 open-reading frame. Furthermore, suppression of LMP-1 was associated with molecular and phenotypic effects that included downregulation of the LMP-1-inducible antiapoptotic genes, Bcl-2 and Mcl-1, inhibition of proliferation, stimulation of apoptosis, and enhancement of sensitivity to the chemotherapeutic agent, etoposide. These effects were largely sequence- specific and observed in EBV-positive, but not EBV-negative cell lines. These studies suggest that lowering expression of LMP-1 in EBV-associated malignancy might have therapeutic effects and might synergize with other antitumor agents.
|Original language||English (US)|
|Number of pages||7|
|State||Published - Sep 1 1998|
ASJC Scopus subject areas
- Cell Biology