Heat shock protein 90 regulates the expression of Wilms tumor 1 protein in myeloid leukemias

Hima Bansal, Sanjay Bansal, Manjeet Rao, Kevin P. Foley, Jim Sang, David A. Proia, Ronald K. Blackman, Weiwen Ying, James Barsoum, Maria R. Baer, Kevin Kelly, Ronan Swords, Gail E. Tomlinson, Minoo Battiwalla, Francis J. Giles, Kelvin P. Lee, Swaminathan Padmanabhan

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29 Scopus citations

Abstract

The aberrant overexpression of Wilms tumor 1 (WT1) in myeloid leukemia plays an important role in blast cell survival and resistance to chemotherapy. High expression of WT1 is also associated with relapse and shortened disease-free survival in patients. However, the mechanisms by which WT1 expression is regulated in leukemia remain unclear. Here, we report that heat shock protein 90 (Hsp90), which plays a critical role in the folding and maturation of several oncogenic proteins, associates with WT1 protein and stabilizes its expression. Pharmacologic inhibition of Hsp90 resulted in ubiquitination and subsequent proteasome-dependant degradation of WT1. RNAi-mediated silencing of WT1 reduced the survival of leukemia cells and increased the sensitivity of these cells to chemotherapy and Hsp90 inhibition. Furthermore, Hsp90 inhibitors 17-AAG [17-(allylamino)-17-demethoxygeldanamycin] and STA-9090 significantly reduced the growth of myeloid leukemia xenografts in vivo and effectively down-regulated the expression of WT1 and its downstream target proteins, c-Myc and Bcl-2. Collectively, our studies identify WT1 as a novel Hsp90 client and support the crucial role for the WT1-Hsp90 interaction in maintaining leukemia cell survival. These findings have significant implications for developing effective therapies for myeloid leukemias and offer a strategy to inhibit the oncogenic functions of WT1 by clinically available Hsp90 inhibitors.

Original languageEnglish (US)
Pages (from-to)4591-4599
Number of pages9
JournalBlood
Volume116
Issue number22
DOIs
StatePublished - Nov 25 2010

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ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • Biochemistry
  • Immunology
  • Hematology
  • Cell Biology

Cite this

Bansal, H., Bansal, S., Rao, M., Foley, K. P., Sang, J., Proia, D. A., Blackman, R. K., Ying, W., Barsoum, J., Baer, M. R., Kelly, K., Swords, R., Tomlinson, G. E., Battiwalla, M., Giles, F. J., Lee, K. P., & Padmanabhan, S. (2010). Heat shock protein 90 regulates the expression of Wilms tumor 1 protein in myeloid leukemias. Blood, 116(22), 4591-4599. https://doi.org/10.1182/blood-2009-10-247239